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Explorer Article

The Mars Perseverance rover has achieved many milestones with more than 100 sols of exploration on the Red Planet. Perseverance and its operators at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory have tested all of the rover’s cameras and instruments. The rover has returned more than 76,000 raw images that are loaded in the mission multimedia catalog available online to everyone. The Ingenuity Mars helicopter has been deployed while Perseverance monitored and relayed all seven successful flights. Now, with three more flight credits, Perseverance and Ingenuity are traveling south exploring Jezero crater together.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Learn! Blog

Welcome to an interview with Herman Darman, whose career in petroleum geology is now transitioning to geothermal energy, particularly in Indonesia, where there are volcanoes as well as repurposeable oil and gas wells.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Easy%R₀ has been perhaps the most widely used model over the past 30 years to help calibrate paleothermal histories. It was published in the AAPG Bulletin in 1990 by Jerry Sweeney and me, and it is one of the most highly-cited articles in the Bulletin in the last 40 years. As the person who constructed the Easy%R₀ algorithm, I would like to share some of the drivers for how the parameters were chosen and why it is appropriate now to move on to more recent models that appear to be more universally correct.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Division Column DEG

The petroleum industry has changed and is under attack. Many want to stop production of carbon-based fuels. There is a logic to this if we look to the future. We need to sustain energy production and fill the holes in the current alternative energy industries like solar, wind turbines, geothermal and advanced batteries. This does not mean oil industry jobs will be eliminated. They will just change.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

At the time of this writing, it is May 15, 2021 that is Sol 83 for the Perseverance “Percy” Rover on Mars. Last month, we witnessed the deployment and first flight of the Mars Ingenuity helicopter. With the world watching the first powered aerial flight on another planet, Ingenuity has accomplished successively more difficult flight tests this month while Percy observes and relays flight data and images to Earth.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

When introducing his American Jobs Plan, President Biden promised it would invest “in America in a way we have not invested since we built the interstate highways and won the Space Race.” To put that investment in perspective, the interstate highway system, encompassing 47,000 miles of roads, cost $500 billion in today’s dollars, adjusting for inflation; the Apollo Program, about $194 billion. The price of the American Jobs Plan: $2.3 trillion. Included is significant investment proposed for the energy sector, which includes expanding clean energy sector tax credits, offering block grants and increasing government purchasing power to aid the new renewable sector.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Increasing global concern about climate change and its impact on the environment and society has led to a variety of strategies to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and to remove CO₂ from the atmosphere and find places to store it. Many companies are hard at work to perfect methods of carbon capture, use, and storage. Franek Hasiuk, associate scientist at Kansas Geological Survey, said CCUS is the best technology available to reduce emissions produced by the global economy. Hasiuk is part of a team of scientists working on the Integrated Midcontinent Stacked Carbon Storage Hub, a project to investigate subsurface geology in southwest Kansas and southwest Nebraska and demonstrate the viability of injecting CO₂ into underground rock layers.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer President’s Column

It's been an amazing year… so many new opportunities while sprinting along the razor’s edge of existence! Early on, we did a lot of self-examination and strategic planning for a new AAPG. Part of the early short-term strategy was to cut and cut to bring the budget down to essential services and those programs that are sponsored by corporate or AAPG Foundation donations. At the same time, we began working on longer-term strategies. You have heard it said that “We are at our best when we prepare ourselves for the worst.” I would change that to say, “We are at our best when we prepare ourselves to avoid the worst!”

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Unconventional resource development has a remarkable history, combining breakthroughs and advances in both technology and geoscience. The pace of progress might have slowed in recent years, but that history is still being written.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

A ransomware cyberattack on the Colonial Pipeline in May brought a short-term disruption of gasoline supplies to the East Coast of the United States. Experts warned the assault has longer-term implications for the oil and gas industry, and for the nation’s critical infrastructure. Following the attack, government agencies quickly vowed to strengthen the nation’s cybersecurity efforts. But the great majority of U.S. energy supply – more than three-quarters, by many estimates – is in the hands of private industry. The Colonial incident “reflects a historically lax cybersecurity culture in the oil and gas industry.”

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Monday, 2 October Tuesday, 3 October 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

AAPG and EAGE have teamed up to deliver the upcoming New Discoveries in Mature Basins workshop to be held from 2-3 October 2023 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Save the date! Registration to open soon.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Monday, 9 October Wednesday, 11 October 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

The fifth annual AAPG Siliciclastic Reservoirs of the Middle East Workshop will take place in Al Khobar in Saudi Arabia from 9 – 11 October 2023. This workshop will bring together professionals from the region to share their knowledge and experience related to siliciclastic reservoirs and showcase the best success stories in the industry on understanding and utilizing oil and gas siliciclastic reservoirs in the region.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Monday, 4 March Wednesday, 6 March 2024, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Join us for the 4th Edition of: "Stratigraphic Traps of the Middle East" workshop. The workshop will be hosted by AAPG in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia 4-6 March 2024.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Paramaribo, Suriname
Wednesday, 17 January Thursday, 18 January 2024, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Plan now to attend an interactive in-person workshop with industry leaders, government representatives and technical experts working in the Guyana-Suriname Basin.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Field Seminar
Lisbon, Portugal
Tuesday, 20 June 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Come along on this 1-day field seminar and tour outcrops in the Serra de Montejunto, just north of Lisbon and on the coast from Porto Novo to Paimogo. Instructors: Ricardo Pereira, GeoBioTec - Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Gil Machado, ChronSurveys Lda & Instituto Dom Luiz Fees: €190 - Local VAT applicable Limit: 20 Participants Includes: Ground Transportation Snacks and Refreshments Lunch and Dinner Guidebook Departure Time/Location 20 June 2023 8:30am Hotel Dom Pedro Note:Transportation to start point is not included in the costs of this trip. Please bring clothing for hot day time temperatures (sun hat/ sun glasses/ sun cream etc.). Participants must wear suitable and comfortable light trekking shoes. Aims To gain or increase an understanding of the tectono-sedimentary processes of continental extension and rifting supported by outcrop observations, with focus on deep-depositional marine systems. Discuss implications for prospective petroleum systems. Promote debate and nourish new insights between attendants. About the Field Trip The Lusitanian Basin records the proximal events of syn- to post rift evolution of the hyper-extended West Iberian Margin, showing some outstanding examples of the combined tectono-stratigraphic depositional systems. Here, the Late Jurassic reveals diverse aspects of mixed marine depositional systems including not only submarine fans and turbidites, but also the build-up of carbonate reefs and shoreface to fluvial clastic sequences. Throughout the field trip the different depositional aspects can be observed in detail to demonstrate how such depositional systems can vary in time and space. Observation of these outcrops allows a better understanding on how deep-water depositional systems can change within a sub-basin and help improving the understanding of reservoir properties.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Lisbon, Portugal
Wednesday, 21 June Thursday, 22 June 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

This 3-day conference brings together diverse experts working on modern and ancient turbidite, MTDs, contourite and hybrid/mixed systems in order to improve the present-day knowledge, models and predictive power.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

President Biden has laid out a bold and ambitious goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions in the United States by 2050.  The pathway to that target includes cutting total greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 and eliminating them entirely from the nation’s electricity sector by 2035. The Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management will play an important role in the transition to net-zero carbon emissions by reducing the environmental impacts of fossil energy production and use – and helping decarbonize other hard-to abate sectors.

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Request a visit from Jennifer Wilcox!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
VG Abstract

Production from unconventional petroleum reservoirs includes petroleum from shale, coal, tight-sand and oil-sand. These reservoirs contain enormous quantities of oil and natural gas but pose a technology challenge to both geoscientists and engineers to produce economically on a commercial scale. These reservoirs store large volumes and are widely distributed at different stratigraphic levels and basin types, offering long-term potential for energy supply. Most of these reservoirs are low permeability and porosity that need enhancement with hydraulic fracture stimulation to maximize fluid drainage. Production from these reservoirs is increasing with continued advancement in geological characterization techniques and technology for well drilling, logging, and completion with drainage enhancement. Currently, Australia, Argentina, Canada, Egypt, USA, and Venezuela are producing natural gas from low permeability reservoirs: tight-sand, shale, and coal (CBM). Canada, Russia, USA, and Venezuela are producing heavy oil from oilsand. USA is leading the development of techniques for exploring, and technology for exploiting unconventional gas resources, which can help to develop potential gas-bearing shales of Thailand. The main focus is on source-reservoir-seal shale petroleum plays. In these tight rocks petroleum resides in the micro-pores as well as adsorbed on and in the organics. Shale has very low matrix permeability (nano-darcies) and has highly layered formations with differences in vertical and horizontal properties, vertically non-homogeneous and horizontally anisotropic with complicate natural fractures. Understanding the rocks is critical in selecting fluid drainage enhancement mechanisms; rock properties such as where shale is clay or silica rich, clay types and maturation , kerogen type and maturation, permeability, porosity, and saturation. Most of these plays require horizontal development with large numbers of wells that require an understanding of formation structure, setting and reservoir character and its lateral extension. The quality of shale-gas resources depend on thickness of net pay (>100 m), adequate porosity (>2%), high reservoir pressure (ideally overpressure), high thermal maturity (>1.5% Ro), high organic richness (>2% TOC), low in clay (<50%), high in brittle minerals (quartz, carbonates, feldspars), and favourable in-situ stress. During the past decade, unconventional shale and tight-sand gas plays have become an important supply of natural gas in the US, and now in shale oil as well. As a consequence, interest to assess and explore these plays is rapidly spreading worldwide. The high production potential of shale petroleum resources has contributed to a comparably favourable outlook for increased future petroleum supplies globally. Application of 2D and 3D seismic for defining reservoirs and micro seismic for monitoring fracturing, measuring rock properties downhole (borehole imaging) and in laboratory (mineralogy, porosity, permeability), horizontal drilling (downhole GPS), and hydraulic fracture stimulation (cross-linked gel, slick-water, nitrogen or nitrogen foam) is key in improving production from these huge resources with low productivity factors.

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Request a visit from Ameed Ghori!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

Three-dimensional (3D) seismic-reflection surveys provide one of the most important data types for understanding subsurface depositional systems. Quantitative analysis is commonly restricted to geophysical interpretation of elastic properties of rocks in the subsurface. Wide availability of 3D seismic-reflection data and integration provide opportunities for quantitative analysis of subsurface stratigraphic sequences. Here, we integrate traditional seismic-stratigraphic interpretation with quantitative geomorphologic analysis and numerical modeling to explore new insights into submarine-channel evolution.

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Request a visit from Jacob Covault!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

Around 170 million years ago, the Gulf of Mexico basin flooded catastrophically, and the pre-existing landscape, which had been a very rugged, arid, semi-desert world, was drowned beneath an inland sea of salt water. The drowned landscape was then buried under kilometers of salt, perfectly preserving the older topography. Now, with high-quality 3D seismic data, the salt appears as a transparent layer, and the details of the drowned world can be seen in exquisite detail, providing a unique snapshot of the world on the eve of the flooding event. We can map out hills and valleys, and a system of river gullies and a large, meandering river system. These rivers in turn fed into a deep central lake, whose surface was about 750m below global sea level. This new knowledge also reveals how the Louann Salt was deposited. In contrast to published models, the salt was deposited in a deep water, hypersaline sea. We can estimate the rate of deposition, and it was very fast; we believe that the entire thickness of several kilometers of salt was laid down in a few tens of thousands of years, making it possibly the fastest sustained deposition seen so far in the geological record.

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Request a visit from Frank Peel!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
VG Abstract

The carbonate sequences that were deposited in the now exhumed Tethyan Ocean influence many aspects of our lives today, either by supplying the energy that warms our homes and the fuel that powers our cars or providing the stunning landscapes for both winter and summer vacations. They also represent some of the most intensely studied rock formations in the world and have provided geoscientists with a fascinating insight into the turbulent nature of 250 Million years of Earth’s history. By combining studies from the full range of geoscience disciplines this presentation will trace the development of these carbonate sequences from their initial formation on the margins of large ancient continental masses to their present day locations in and around the Greater Mediterranean and Near East region. The first order control on growth patterns and carbonate platform development by the regional plate-tectonic setting, underlying basin architecture and fluctuations in sea level will be illustrated. The organisms that contribute to sequence development will be revealed to be treasure troves of forensic information. Finally, these rock sequences will be shown to contain all the ingredients necessary to form and retain hydrocarbons and the manner in which major post-depositional tectonic events led to the formation of some of the largest hydrocarbon accumulations in the world will be demonstrated.

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Request a visit from Keith Gerdes!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
VG Abstract

In comparison with the known boundary conditions that promote salt deformation and flow in sedimentary basins, the processes involved with the mobilization of clay-rich detrital sediments are far less well established. This talk will use seismic examples in different tectonic settings to document the variety of shale geometries that can be formed under brittle and ductile deformations.

Request a visit from Juan I. Soto!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

As oil and gas exploration and production occur in deeper basins and more complex geologic settings, accurate characterization and modeling of reservoirs to improve estimated ultimate recovery (EUR) prediction, optimize well placement and maximize recovery become paramount. Existing technologies for reservoir characterization and modeling have proven inadequate for delivering detailed 3D predictions of reservoir architecture, connectivity and rock quality at scales that impact subsurface flow patterns and reservoir performance. Because of the gap between the geophysical and geologic data available (seismic, well logs, cores) and the data needed to model rock heterogeneities at the reservoir scale, constraints from external analog systems are needed. Existing stratigraphic concepts and deposition models are mostly empirical and seldom provide quantitative constraints on fine-scale reservoir heterogeneity. Current reservoir modeling tools are challenged to accurately replicate complex, nonstationary, rock heterogeneity patterns that control connectivity, such as shale layers that serve as flow baffles and barriers.

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Request a visit from Tao Sun!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
VG Abstract

The Betic hinterland, in the westernmost Mediterranean, constitutes a unique example of a stack of metamorphic units. Using a three-dimensional model for the crustal structure of the Betics-Rif area this talk will address the role of crustal flow simultaneously to upper-crustal low-angle faulting in the origin and evolution of the topography.

Request a visit from Juan I. Soto!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

Local sea-level changes are not simply a function of global ocean volumes but also the interactions between the solid Earth, the Earth’s gravitational field and the loading and unloading of ice sheets. Contrasting behaviors between Antarctica and Scotland highlight how important the geologic structure beneath the former ice sheets is in determining the interactions between ice sheets and relative sea levels.

Request a visit from Alex Simms!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

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