Considerable effort has been devoted to the development of simulation algorithms for facies modeling, whereas a discussion of how to combine those techniques has not existed. The integration of multiple geologic data into a three-dimensional model, which requires the combination of simulation techniques, is yet a current challenge for reservoir modeling. This article presents a thought process that guides the acquisition and modeling of geologic data at various scales. Our work is based on outcrop data collected from a Jurassic carbonate ramp located in the High Atlas mountain range of Morocco. The study window is 1 km (0.6 mi) wide and 100 m (328.1 ft) thick. We describe and model the spatial and hierarchical arrangement of carbonate bodies spanning from largest to smallest: (1) stacking pattern of high-frequency depositional sequences, (2) facies association, and (3) lithofacies. Five sequence boundaries were modeled using differential global position system mapping and light detection and ranging data. The surface-based model shows a low-angle profile with modest paleotopographic relief at the inner-to-middle ramp transition. Facies associations were populated using truncated Gaussian simulation to preserve ordered trends between the inner, middle, and outer ramps. At the lithofacies scale, field observations and statistical analysis show a mosaiclike distribution that was simulated using a fully stochastic approach with sequential indicator simulation.
This study observes that the use of one single simulation technique is unlikely to correctly model the natural patterns and variability of carbonate rocks. The selection and implementation of different techniques customized for each level of the stratigraphic hierarchy will provide the essential computing flexibility to model carbonate settings. This study demonstrates that a scale-dependent modeling approach should be a common procedure when building subsurface and outcrop models.
Added on 30 April, 2013
The AAPG Europe Region joined with the Moroccan Association of Petroleum Geologists to hold the second International Joint MAPG and AAPG Conference and Exhibition in Marrakech in early October.
Added on 01 December, 2011
Play Fairway study available for free: 400-KM integrated dataset used in study .
Added on 01 July, 2011
Europe needs a remedy: Years of worry about reliable gas supply from Russia has Europe looking north for gas exploration. Algeria may be just what the doctor ordered.
Added on 01 February, 2009
There were many reasons why the recent AAPG International Conference and Exhibition in Cape Town was a success – but “diversity” may be the word to remember.
Added on 01 December, 2008
Explorer Division Column EMD
Despite discouraging economic conditions over the last two years, development of the world’s vast resources of oil shale continues to make progress.
Added on 01 August, 2010
After decades spent visiting Morocco and neighboring Algeria, an AAPG member who's led countless field trips to some of the earth's most exotic places says the two old countries are evolving into modern times.
Added on 01 August, 2013
Deeper targets, higher excitement: Industry enthusiasm for shale gas (and oil) plays just keeps escalating – and the interest is going global.
Added on 01 August, 2010
The impact of the rapid economic growth of “Asian giants” China and India is such that African oil supplies now face increased demand to fuel this growth and, therefore, increased E&P activity.
Added on 01 February, 2010
Explorer Regions and Sections
For those of us in the AAPG European Region, 2011 began where 2010 left off – very busy.
Added on 01 June, 2011