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Alexander Mihai Popovici


Alexander Mihai Popovici

Alexander Mihai Popovici is Chief Executive Officer of Z-Terra, a state-of-the-art software, data processing and infrastructure provider for the upstream oil and gas industry.  Z-Terra is headquartered in Houston, Texas and has regional offices and representation in Calgary - Canada, The Hague - Netherlands, London - U.K., Rio de Janeiro - Brazil, Bucharest - Romania, Bogota - Colombia, Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia, Buenos Aires - Argentina. Abu-Dhabi - UAE and Kuwait City - Kuwait.  He holds Ph.D. (1995) and M.Sc. (1990) degrees in geophysics from Stanford University, and a B.S. (1986) in geophysical and geological engineering from University of Bucharest, Romania.  He escaped from Romania in 1986, crossed two borders at night and spent a year in a refugee camp in Austria.  Popovici is the founder and former CEO of 3DGeo Inc.  The company was sold in 2008.  3DGeo grew from two employees in Palo Alto, California, to an international corporation with offices in Houston, California, Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, with representation in Beijing and The Hague.  In 2001, 3DGeo was recognized as one of the Top 100 Innovative Companies by InfoWorld.  The company won the Hart E&P Meritorious Award for Engineering Innovation in 2007 and the IEEE Spectrum Technology award in 2008.  Dr. Popovici's industry experience includes work in the seismic processing research department for Halliburton Geophysical Services in Dallas and Houston, and EM acquisition and processing contracts with the University of Bucharest, Romania. 

He has more than ten patents in the field, over 100 publications in conference proceedings, books, trade journals, and research reports and has given numerous invited talks at conferences, geophysical associations, and geophysical workshops.  He has been a member of the SEG Research Committee, served as Associate Editor (Seismic Migration) for Geophysics, and is past Chairman and founding board member of Geoscientists Without Borders, an SEG Foundation program that funds humanitarian applications of geophysics around the world.  He served on the SEG Board in 2017-2019 as Vice-President and was the 2017 SEG Houston Technical Program Chairman. 

Popovici is active in the community; he was president of Casa Romana (, a non-profit organization serving Americans of Romanian origin living in the Bay Area.  He was elected to this position in 1997 and built the largest Romanian community center and church on the West Coast.  Casa Romana was dedicated in 1998 by the president of Romania Emil Constantinescu.  At present he is Honorary Consul of Romania in Houston.

Popovici is director on the board of the Romanian Education Foundation (, which he co-founded in 1994, a charitable organization helping foreign students from impoverished families to apply at American and European universities.  He is a scuba diving instructor, active fencer (ranked top ten in the veteran division of the US), plays paintball with one of the first established pro teams (The Wild Geese, founded 1985), practices karate, rock climbs, likes to hunt, and is working on his private pilot license. 

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