Reservoir Geology Consultants

Outcrop-Based Research

Geological modelling experience gained over the last 20 years has proved that the most successful reservoir models (i.e. those models which can reliably predict reservoir distribution ahead of drilling) are those which most closely represent geological reality as seen at outcrop.

Our modelling efforts are therefore concentrated on recreating realistic reservoir architecture in the models, rather than using probabilistic techniques that produce unrealistic-looking results which rarely succeed in a reliable prediction.

Over the pasts 3 years we have been carrying out collaborative research with Dr. Simon Pattison from Brandon University, Canada.

3D Facies Model

Reality Checks

Outcrop Exercises / Discussions

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Our research is focused on correctly predicting architecture of fluvial-estuarine and shoreface deposits for use in reservoir modeling studies where there is little or no well data.

Recent research results can be found at:

Optimizing field development and design of surface facilities relies on accurate production forecasting. A key parameter in workflow efficiency is to minimize uncertainty in 3-D sub-surface models by only including credible sedimentary architecture. The objective of this study was to define the best modeling strategy for the creation of realistic reservoir architecture in sub-surface models of wave-dominated shoreface/deltaic deposits. To achieve this goal, a fully-deterministic 3-D model was created which exactly matches a well-exposed series of outcrops which have adjacent sub-surface core and log data. The exceptionally well-exposed near-horizontal Campanian strata of the Book Cliffs in eastern Utah were chosen as the basis for this study as they provide ideal outcrop analogs which have previously been used to develop, test and refine many sedimentological and stratigraphic models, including the principles and concepts of sequence stratigraphy. Various probabilistic methods were used to create a series of different models using the same input well data; each result was then objectively compared against the answer provided by the fully deterministic model. Results showed that the most successful approach to creating realistic architecture in models was to use deterministic methods where detailed geological knowledge of organisational patterns can be included. Probabilistic models constructed using a minimum of geological input result in the poorest comparison to reality, with an unrealistic, disorganised scatter of sediment bodies. However, these models showed considerable improvement when (a) a high-resolution deterministic framework of time-lines was introduced; (b) when geological trends were used to capture the broad-scale architecture of the reservoir; (c) when body shape and size were deterministically constrained.

Example figures from our April 2008 AAPG poster showing a poor match of some stochastic techniques with the outcrop. We hope to publish the full article shortly.

No Match with Outcrop

Default body geometries used for the shorefaces.

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Poor Match with Outcrop

Based on a simple stratigraphic framework.

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Some Match with Outcrop

Incorporates vertical and lateral facies trends.

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Fair Match with Outcrop

Based on a detailed deterministic framework.

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Perfect Match with Outcrop

Based on a totally deterministic framework.

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