08 April, 2016 Santa Barbara California United States

The Future of Basin and Petroleum Systems Modeling

3-8 April 2016
Santa Barbara, California, United States


Conference Description

Demand for energy is growing rapidly, forcing the oil and gas industry to explore in more challenging environments for higher risk petroleum system plays. To be able to describe, identify and predict these complex plays and new prospects successfully, integration of all risk elements and processes (e.g., reservoir, seal, overburden, source rock, trap formation, generation, migration, accumulation, preservation and timing) is necessary. Integration is more important than ever before due to the increasing complexity of the challenges. One of the best ways to test the potential for a working petroleum system and the interplay of all risk elements and processes is to use numerical Basin and Petroleum System Modeling. BPSM has become an indispensable tool in frontier basins to identify risk, reduce uncertainty, and identify new potential areas. This technology has become more important over time as a result of increased understanding of processes and the rapid development of computing power. Both the hardware and the software are evolving to quantify more complex processes.

Field Trip Information

Field Trip Description & Itinerary
We are offering an all-day excursion to the petroleum system of the Santa Barbara. We will examine all of the essential elements of the petroleum system from source rock to reservoir rock to seal rock to overburden rock. The field trip also highlights basin structuring, outcrop analogs for sandstone reservoir rocks at depth, and outcrop analogs of fractured shale and conventional sandstone reservoir rocks. 

We will leave early in the morning (load buses at 7:30AM) from the Santa Barbara Hyatt and drive to Ventura, where we will tour outcrops of Ventura Avenue Field. This allows us to discuss the seal and reservoir rocks of the petroleum system. We then will travel to Carpinteria State Beach where outcrops provide the first, but limited, glimpse of the Monterey Formation source rock. Beach outcrops of Monterey Formation and the overlying Quaternary terrace are saturated with asphalt throughout the entire length of the beach. Additionally, numerous blebs, lenses, and laminae of phosphate locally interbedded with the organic-shale. We finish our day at Gaviota State Park, located where the Monterey Formation is upturned onshore and nestled between the Santa Ynez Mountains to the north and the oil- and gas-producing structures of the Santa Barbara Channel to the south. Impressive outcrops allow us to discuss depositional facies of the Monterey and conflicting models of Monterey paleoenvironment.

Attire and Safety
Hiking boots are not strictly necessary but may be appreciated; all shoes must be closed-toe. Long-sleeved shirt and pants are required. The field trip organizer will provide hardhat, safety glasses, and safety vests.

Field Trip Leaders and Coordinator
Allegra Hosford Scheirer, Stanford University (organizer, field guide author)
Contributions from: Les Magoon, USGS (retired) and Stanford University; Ken Peters, Schlumberger and Stanford University
Jon Schwalbach (Aera)

The conference aims to bring together professionals from academia, government agencies and industry who are actively involved in pushing the technical limits and application of basin modeling. New ideas are welcomed from R&D scientists (whether they have an academic or industry background), the hardware/software computing industry, exploration business units of the oil and gas industry, or any closely related disciplines, e.g., geochemistry or geothermal industry. Students are also welcome as long as they are able to actively contribute.


The four main goals of this conference are:

  1. To share knowledge, experience and opinions across different affiliations in BPSM
  2. To identify limitations of concepts, workflows and technologies and to explore new solutions and potential improvements in BPSM
  3. To promote awareness that integration is key to solving complex E&P challenges
  4. To better understand the subsurface processes for specific areas of interest through case studies
Technical Themes

Potential technical themes for which speakers are invited to submit abstracts include:

  • Structural complexity in basin models
    • Combining structural modeling with basin modeling and how to handle any complex structural features (e.g. salt and mud diapers, thrust and strike slip faults, compression and extension).
  • Rock properties and pressure prediction
    • This session will focus on effective stress- and pressure-prediction as well as on how to define rock properties for basin models and other related topics.
  • Fluid migration and mass balance
    • Studies analyzing the application of Darcy-, invasion percolation- and flowpath-migration or any combined methods as well as mass balance calculations and analyses.
  • Geochemistry
    • Integration of geochemistry into basin models such as diagenetic effects, biogenic gas, gas hydrates, shale geochemistry, kinetics, biodegradation, TSR, and GOR and API prediction.
  • Geodynamics and Heat Flow
    • Different techniques can be discussed on how to predict thermal stress and heat flow and what the corresponding driving mechanisms are.
  • New Techniques & Tools
    • New developments and tools used in basin and petroleum systems modeling.
  • Risk & Uncertainty Management
    • Projects that have applied statistical or deterministic ways to quantify risk and reduce uncertainty for any petroleum system element or process.
  • Case Studies (both Conventionals and Unconventionals)
    • Worldwide case studies showing how they have influenced E&P decisions, and insights into new high potential areas of interest.



Five days of presentations from professionals in academia, government agencies and industry with new ideas from R&D scientists.

Santa Barbara, CA - Hyatt
1111 East Cabrillo Boulevard
Santa Barbara California 93103
United States
Santa Barbara, CA - Hyatt Santa Barbara, CA - Hyatt 11906

Group Information
Group Name: AAPG
Check-in: 03-April-2016
Check-out: 09-April-2016
Last day to book: 11-March-2016

Marriott hotel(s) offering your special group rate: Hyatt Santa Barbara for $239.00 USD per night For Room Reservations (805)882-1234



Events Coordinator +1 918 560-9431
Desktop /Portals/0/PackFlashItemImages/WebReady/mahan-amy2.jpg?width=75&quality=90&encoder=freeimage&progressive=true 29 Amy Mahan

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The American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) does not endorse or recommend any products and services that may be cited, used or discussed in AAPG publications or in presentations at events associated with AAPG.