SPE News

In Memoriam: Anatoly Zolotukhin

SPE Distinguished Member and a founder of the SPE’s first section in Moscow, died 13 March. He was 76.

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He was a rectorate adviser and professor at the Russian State Gubkin University of Oil and Gas, Moscow, chaired professor at the Northern Arctic Federal University, Archangelsk, Russia, and professor emeritus at the University of Stavanger, Norway.

The child of two petroleum engineers, Zolotukhin started his oil and gas industry career with a degree in petroleum engineering from Gubkin University. He then received his MSc in reservoir engineering and PhD in fluid mechanics from Gubkin University, an MSc in applied mathematics from Moscow State University, and a doctor of technical sciences degree in reservoir engineering from Gubkin University. In 1978, he was selected for a post-doctoral fellowship in reservoir engineering at Stanford University.

Zolotukhin served at Gubkin University for more than 40 years and at the University of Stavanger for more than 25 years. He was also project manager and technical director at Equinor from 1999 to 2008. During his tenure at Gubkin University, he grew the university as an international center for petroleum studies by collaborating with other renowned institutes such as the Institut Français du Pétrole, University of Stavanger, Royal Technical University of Stockholm, Texas A&M University, and Imperial College.

A believer of the potential of the Arctic, Zolotukhin was the director of sciences of the Institute of Arctic Petroleum Technologies at Gubkin University for many years since its founding in 2008. He was also a member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, the Norwegian Scientific Academy of Polar Research, and the Academic Council of the European Energy Forum in Berlin, Germany. He was senior vice president of the World Petroleum Council from 2008 to 2011.

Zolotukhin was the author or coauthor of 20 books and many book chapters and technical articles. He was an SPE Distinguished Lecturer in 2013–2014 on the title “Arctic Petroleum Resources: Basis for Petroleum Activities in the 21st Century.” Zolotukhin nurtured the growth of SPE in Russia. He served as SPE’s Gubkin University student chapter faculty advisor for 10 years, held board positions in the SPE Moscow section, was a member of program committees for SPE events in the Russia and Europe regions, and technical editor for SPE journals.

For his services to petroleum engineering education, he was honored with the SPE Regional Achievement Award for Petroleum Engineering Faculty in 2012 and SPE Distinguished Membership in 2020. Along with the coauthors, Zolotukhin received the Gubkin Prize, the highest award in the Russian petroleum industry, for his book Basics of Offshore Petroleum Engineering and Development of Marine Facilities in the Arctic in 2002. In 2006, he was awarded the Vernadsky Medal of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences for achievements in science and research.