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Bulletin Article

3252
 

In prospective basins affected by exhumation, uncertainty commonly exists regarding the maximum burial depths of source, reservoir, and seal horizons. One such basin is the Otway Basin, an important gas province in southeastern Australia, which has witnessed several exhumation events. Here, we present estimates of net exhumation magnitudes for 110 onshore and offshore petroleum wells based on the sonic transit time analyses of Lower Cretaceous fluvial shales. Our results show significant post-Albian net exhumation in the eastern onshore Otway Basin (gt1500 m [sim4920 ft]) and a generally minor net exhumation (lt200 m [sim655 ft]) elsewhere in the Otway Basin, consistent with estimates based on thermal history data. The distribution of net exhumation magnitudes in relation to mid-Cretaceous and Neogene compressional structures indicates that exhumation was dominantly controlled by short-wavelength basin inversion driven by plate-boundary forces.

Deeper burial coupled with high geothermal gradients in the onshore eastern Otway Basin and along the northern basin margin during the early Cretaceous have rendered Lower Cretaceous source rocks mostly overmature, with any remaining hydrocarbons from the initial charge likely to be trapped in tightly compacted reservoirs and/or secondary (fracture-related) porosity. However, the embrittlement of these reservoirs during their deeper burial may present opportunities for the development of low-permeability plays through hydraulic fracturing where smectite clay minerals are illitized. Source rocks at near-maximum burial at present day are at temperatures suitable for gas generation, with key controls on prospectivity in these areas including the sealing potential of faulted traps and the relationship between charge and trap development.

DL Abstract

3082
 

Using examples from shale reservoirs worldwide, I demonstrate the diversity of shale-hosted fracture systems and present evidence for how and why various fractures systems form. Core and outcrop observations, strength tests on shale and on fractures in core, and geomechanical models allow prediction of fracture patterns and attributes that can be taken into account in well placement and hydraulic fracture treatment design. Both open and sealed fractures can interact with and modify hydraulic fracture size and shape. Open fractures can enhance reservoir permeability but may conduct treatment fluids great distances, in some instances possibly aseismically.

Explorer Article

8490
 

If you want to know about the Eagle Ford play in Texas, AAPG member Art Donovan is a man you want to be talking to.

8473
 

Shale formations can confound even the savviest geoscientist when it comes to determining the inner workings of the rock. After expert evaluation, even the most attractive prospecting deal can be a tough sell. And there’s almost always a new piece to each of these puzzles that requires some sophisticated high-tech explaining.

3168
 

The second annual Playmaker Forum will build on the success of last year’s event, offering professional development, networking, and tricks of the trade from some of the best oil finders in the world.

Explorer Division Column EMD

3800
 

Every six months, chairs of the Energy Minerals Division committees convene and report on developments in the areas they cover. In this column, we highlight important observations from these recent reports.

139
 

A recent story about Shell’s withdrawal from a long-lived project on in situ production of shale oil from oil shale was an interesting example of over-interpretation of a small dataset.

Explorer Emphasis

3169
 

New geosteering tools are helping to drive eye-raising crude oil production levels in the Bakken shale play.

1762
 

It’s now been shown that the “sweet” aspect of an identified sweet spot can change – not only stratigraphically, but also laterally within the zone itself.

Explorer Regions and Sections

2665
 

Concepts and technologies developed for liquid-rich unconventional plays in North America are on the verge of being exported worldwide.

Field Seminar

Great Falls Montana United States 08 September, 2014 13 September, 2014 150
 
Great Falls, Montana, United States
8-13 September 2014

The seminar will utilize traverses to examine multiple thrust sheets exposed in Sun River Canyon, the famous Teton Anticline, and an outstanding example of an exposed fractured reservoir along a fault‐propagated fold in Mississippian carbonates as Swift Reservoir. Participants will examine the mechanics of fracturing, folding, and faulting in thrust belt terrains, identify and discuss new ideas regarding the geometry and kinematics of the development of thrust belts, compare seismic interpretation with outcrop examples, and analyze stratigraphic concepts which are essential in the exploration of thrust belt targets.

Salt Lake City Utah United States 14 September, 2014 21 September, 2014 151
 
Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
14-21 September 2014

This course therefore aims at developing an understanding of the unique aspects of lacustrine source rocks, reservoirs, and basin evolution that will aid future exploration and development efforts.

Watkins Glen New York United States 23 June, 2014 27 June, 2014 147
 
Watkins Glen, New York, United States
23-27 June 2014

The attendee will gain a working knowledge concerning how faults and fractures develop and their terminology, methodologies utilized in collecting and analyzing fracture data, characteristics of faults and fractures that affect the sedimentary units (including black shales) in the northern Appalachian Basin of New York state, and tectonics that led to the formation of the structures in the northern Appalachian Basin and the adjacent Appalachian Orogen.

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