HomeScience

Science

Explorer President’s Column

I sometimes find it amusing that several people can look at the same data and come to diametrically opposed opinions as to what that information represents. I think we can all chuckle when three geologists view an outcrop and come up with five conflicting interpretations of what depositional environment is represented in the exposure, for example. Diametrically opposed opinions related to the health and financial condition of AAPG are more concerning than amusing to me, however.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Approximately 80 percent of today’s global energy supply comes from fossils fuels, 54 percent of which is supplied by oil and gas. Global society’s goal for the near future is to enjoy the same or better quality of life, but with zero carbon emitted. This presents a set of challenging questions of particular relevance to AAPG members. How will energy demand evolve? How difficult is it to remove oil and gas from the global energy mix? And if they remain part of the mix, what kind of hydrocarbons are we looking for? How important will geological carbon storage be in assisting efforts to reach net zero? These questions were investigated in a recent paper by the authors entitled, “Demand for ‘advantaged’ hydrocarbons during the 21st century energy transition,” and published in the journal Energy Reports. The results are summarized here.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Nestled in the southernmost Caribbean lies Trinidad and Tobago, a 5,130-square-kilometer twin-island republic, famous for its colorful Carnival celebrations, melodious steelpan drums, picturesque beaches and savory street foods. Trinidad and Tobago is known also for its longstanding presence in the energy sector, which is the primary economic driver for the country’s population of 1.4 million. T and T’s latest Deep Water Competitive Bidding Round launched in December and closed in June. The Ministry will announce bidding round results in September.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Director’s Corner

During the height of the pandemic, Society of Exploration Geophysicists Executive Director Jim White and I discussed how we could work better together – delivering an innovative conference for petroleum and energy geoscientists that also involved other geoscience disciplines focused on solving real world challenges. Our elected leaders at the time supported the vision for AAPG and SEG to create a new, joint annual meeting: the International Meeting for Applied Geoscience and Energy, or “IMAGE,” conducted in cooperation with SEPM. We’re eager and ready for IMAGE ’22 in Houston at the end of this month, and hope that you are, too.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

Peter Odell was a pioneer figure in petroleum economics. His ideas and analyses were highly influential in his own time and are still worth studying today. Many people came to know of Odell through his best-selling “Oil and World Power: A Geographical Interpretation.” What strikes the reader of this and other works by Odell is the author’s cross-disciplinary approach to the oil and gas industry, integrating economic analyses with geopolitics, history, maps and geography. His publications were relatable to geologists as well. The issues he addressed, in different forms, are still with us.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The Africa Region’s GeoMagic team is the winner of the AAPG Sustainable Development in Energy Competition. AAPG’s Sustainable Development in Energy Competition for students and young professionals is intended to encourage sustainable development in energy industries. The objective is to harness the creativity of students and young professionals to develop innovative and sustainable development projects across the energy spectrum with a positive social, environmental and economic impact.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

Data conditioning tools are necessary to improve seismic interpretation, which is particularly important when examining legacy data. The tools typically adopted for the purpose are structure-oriented filtering and random noise suppression. While these methods can help improve structural or stratigraphic interpretations, they can also impact amplitude anomalies if they are not done with care, which can present problems when examining seismic data for direct hydrocarbon indicators. The examples presented herein demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages associated with these data conditioning tools.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

What exactly will be the role of geoscientists as we traverse the difficult path to a net-zero future? Maria Angela Capello, managing director of Red Tree Consulting, executive vice president of the carbon storage company RESI and AAPG Distinguished Lecturer, said those professionals will play a unique role because, frankly … Who else is there?

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Members of Generation Z, also known as GenZ or Zoomers, are known to be technologically adept, diverse, trendy, pragmatic and financially minded. They have a wide variety of interests. Geoscience is definitely not one of them. That worries Claudia Mora, because she is currently dean of the Jackson School of Geosciences at the University of Texas at Austin. For her, attracting students to geoscience is the name of the game.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

This year’s International Meeting for Applied Geoscience and Energy, beginning August 28 in Houston, doesn’t have a single, overarching theme. But one concept keeps popping up again and again: Innovation. AAPG and the Society of Exploration Geophysicists, in conjunction with SEPM, are hosts for the second annual IMAGE meeting. It’s designed as a broad-interest event, with 30 key topic areas ranging – alphabetically – from acquisition and survey design to structure, tectonics and geomechanics. As an AAPG/SEG-sponsored event, IMAGE will include several sessions related to geological analysis, imaging and interpretation.

Show more
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, 27 November Wednesday, 29 November 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Mark your calendars and save the date to attend the 5th edition of the AAPG Siliciclastic Reservoirs of the Middle East GTW which will be held for the first time in Al-Khobar, Saudi Arabia from 27-29 November 2023. We look forward to having you on board for the new edition of these popular series.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Muscat, Oman
Monday, 13 November Wednesday, 15 November 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Exciting announcement for all geoscientists interested in structural styles. The 3rd edition of the AAPG Structural Styles of the Middle East is coming back to Oman from 13-15 November 2023. Come join us to learn all the latest developments on the topic!

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.

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 9-11 October 2023.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Monday, 8 May Wednesday, 10 May 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

“Wait! There is a short cut. Turn right from here”. That’s probably the sound of an electric current bypassing the resistive hydrocarbons, in a maze or network of porous media, when traveling from transmitter to receiver. This workshop will serve the participants need with the up to date advancements in describing and characterizing low resistivity and low contrast pay, and eventually, maximize resources.

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

Secure energy supply and energy immediate availability are key subject for a peaceful and sustainable growth in developed countries and in particular in Europe. This workshop will bring together professionals working in industry and in academia to share experiences, present-day work and future visions related to all geo-subjects involving exploration and development of energy sources in the subsurface.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Paramaribo, Suriname
Thursday, 2 November Friday, 3 November 2023, 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)
Workshop
Barranquilla, Colombia
Wednesday, 8 February Thursday, 9 February 2023, 8:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.

Join technical experts, industry leaders and government representatives for an interactive in-person workshop highlighting onshore and offshore E&P opportunities, new technologies and sustainable development strategies working in Colombia, Trinidad & Tobago, Barbados, Jamaica, and the Dominican Republic.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Tuesday, 9 May Wednesday, 10 May 2023, 8:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.

Plan now to attend an interactive in-person workshop with industry leaders, government representatives and technical experts working to help Brazil maintain its E&P capacity while transitioning to a decarbonized economy.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Short Course
Bridgetown, Barbados
Wednesday, 1 March Thursday, 2 March 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

This 2-day, in-person course describes the range and variability in deepwater sedimentary systems and equips participants to build predictive models of subsurface geology for more successful exploration and development. A primary goal of this course is to enable subsurface teams to more effectively characterize and rank deepwater/offshore projects on a regional and global scale.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Muscat, Oman
Monday, 16 January Wednesday, 18 January 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

The sedimentary basins of the Middle East have been proved to contain vast hydrocarbon reserves, sourced by some of the most prolific petroleum systems in the world. This is the product of a range of factors, not least the long-lived, relative stability of the Arabian Plate and the presence of multiple, prolific organic source rocks. This workshop will address these and other subjects and to discuss the main challenges present in our current understanding of petroleum systems in the Middle East.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Lviv, Ukraine
Thursday, 21 September Friday, 22 September 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Join us for a workshop where experts will  explore the Carpathian foreland and the Dnieper-Donetsk rift basins with a focus not only on hydrocarbons, but the utilization of geothermal resources, hydrogen exploration and CCUS.

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 2-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)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 10 November 2011, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This work investigates how heterogeneity can be defined and how we can quantify this term by describing a range of statistical heterogeneity (e.g. coefficient of variation and the Lorenz coefficient).

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 2 July 2020, 4:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m.

Presented by Kevin C. Hill, Associate Professor, University of Melbourne Gravity modelling of Australia's southern margin reveals that the initial rift with Antarctica was beneath the current Ceduna Delta. A regional, high-quality seismic traverse from the coast to oceanic crust across the Bight Basin has been assembled and interpreted in detail, then balanced, restored, decompacted, and replaced at paleo-water depths. The Late Cretaceous Ceduna Delta developed above a Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous rift basin in three stages punctuated by significant pulses of uplift and erosion across areas >100 km wide and with up to 1 km of erosion. The Cenomanian White Pointer delta prograded into deepening water and hence underwent gravitational collapse. This was terminated in the Santonian when the Antarctic margin was pulled out from below, thus supplying heat to a remnant thicker outer margin crust, causing doming and erosion. Importantly, this established the saucer-shaped geometry of the Ceduna Delta that persisted throughout its development, so that any hydrocarbons generated in the southern half of the basin would have migrated towards this outer margin high. The Tiger Formation was deposited in shallow water in a full rift basin prior to breakup, which was followed by regional thermal subsidence. The Hammerhead delta developed on the newly formed passive margin but was terminated by another pulse of uplift and erosion, perhaps associated with a change in plate motion at the end of the Cretaceous. The finite element modelling of this proposed tectonic evolution will test its validity and predict hydrocarbon generation and migration through time.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Friday, 27 March 2009, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

Join two GIS/geoscience experts Scott Sires and Gerry Bartz as they use information from the Teapot Dome Field in Wyoming (DOE/RMOTC program).

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 21 October 2010, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This e-symposium covers how to conduct an interdisciplinary evaluation of mature fields to determine the best approach to recover remaining reserves.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 15 March 2012, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This e-symposium presents techniques for predicting pore pressure in seals by examining case studies from the Gulf of Mexico and incorporating the relationship between rocks, fluids, stress, and pressure.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Tuesday, 12 May 2020, 5:30 p.m.–6:30 p.m.

Both climate change and the most recent coronavirus pandemic have generated multiple impacts on society. Though on the surface the crises appear to be unrelated, they have more similarities than differences. The common elements shared by Covid-19 and climate change promote the development of comprehensive solutions that mitigate both crises simultaneously. This talk examines how actions and strategies developed for the energy transition can help to address the multiple challenges that the world faces today.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 29 April 2010, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This presentation will focus on the seismic stratigraphic and seismic geomorphologic expression of deep-water deposits, including both reservoir and non-reservoir facies.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 24 September 2020, 8:30 p.m.–9:30 p.m.

In the past 3 decades the sequence stratigraphy jargon has proliferated, resulting in multiple definitions of the same surface or new surfaces and units based on drawings of deposition in response to relative changes in sea level. The close association between base-level changes, the formation of surfaces, and specific stratal stacking that define systems tracts are at the heart of the confusion. This webinar is proposed a back-to-basics approach, emphasizing key observations that can be made from any geologic data: lithofacies, lithofacies association, vertical stacking, stratal geometries, and stratal terminations.

Show more
American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 12 November 2020, 5:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.

Contourites have come of age – both scientifically and economically. These deepwater sedimentary systems, driven by long-slope bottom-current processes, are a fundamental component of many continental margin successions. They are inter-bedded with and interact with down-slope systems, pelagic systems, and deep tidal processes. The contourite play clearly works – now we need to make it a primary target in future deepwater exploration.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Monday, 29 June 2020, 12:00 a.m.–1:00 a.m.

This talk examines what we are missing the use of in terms of waste heat in both the petroleum industry and long abandoned coal industry of the UK, how we might use that heat and what the collateral benefits of heat use would be in terms of sustainability and the circular economy.

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.

Show more

Request a visit from Jennifer Wilcox!

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.

Show more

Request a visit from Frank Peel!

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)
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.

Show more

Request a visit from Tao Sun!

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.

Show more

Request a visit from Jacob Covault!

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)
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.

Show more

Request a visit from Keith Gerdes!

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.

Show more

Request a visit from Ameed Ghori!

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)

Related Interests