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Explorer Emphasis Article

On April 11, the University of Tulsa announced an alignment – a “Reimagining,” it was called – of its curriculum and identity. It is a plan that will cut its majors by more than 40 percent, from 196 to 112. These cuts will hit the humanities the hardest – and these get the lion’s share of the media coverage – but the reductions in programs and degrees are not just limited to theater, music, philosophy and foreign languages. The school’s Department of Geosciences will also be hobbled when the plan takes effect.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Laura Branch teaches high school science courses and is one of only a few credentialed Earth science teachers in Santa Barbara County and has the only upper-level high school geology class in the county. As a geoscience instructor, Branch is able to teach her students about the petroleum system and the seepage of oil and heavy oil in the coastal area.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Saudi Arabia is reportedly considering a move away from the U.S. dollar in pricing its international crude shipments. That sounds like surprising news, but it’s actually part of a story that’s played out for almost 20 years. Now this story has a new twist. Actually, several twists. The issue is NOPEC, the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act – proposed legislation that has kicked around the U.S. Congress for a couple of decades.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Call it an exploration recovery. Call it a rebound. But it feels like the oil and gas industry is returning to health in fits and starts. That could be because the patient was sicker than we realize. Any measure of how far exploration has come back should take into consideration how far back it started.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Learn! Blog

Welcome to an interview with Tom Glover, Senior Industry Analyst of Upstream Intelligence, the organizers of the Data-Driven Drilling and Production (DDDP) conference, which takes place in Houston in June. The conference features industry decision-makers who work with data scientists who use new analytics to optimize upstream and midstream operations.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Middle East Blog

This technical workshop will be dedicated to sharing knowledge, experience and formation evaluation pertaining to low-resistivity and low-resistivity-contrast pay. This event is essentially an attempt to bring the global talent to the table to exchange expertise gained over the years from fields located in different regions and divergent geological setups, on manifestation and causes of low-resistivity and low-resistivity-contrast pay locally and also experience in dealing with the complexity of the formation evaluation through new tool technology and algorithms. You can now register for this innovative workshop taking place on 7-9 October 2019 in Muscat, Oman. The workshop will be 2.5 days, consisting of oral presentations, poster presentations and breakout sessions where participants will be able to discuss and investigate a specific theme that is of mutual interest.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Middle East Blog

With the increasing demand on hydrocarbons and the de-creased number and volumes of discoveries, there is a great necessity to find new exploration concepts. Over three days, the Integrated Emerging Exploration Concepts: Challenges, Future Trends and Opportunities workshop will emphasize the importance of identifying new thinking and approaches to develop exploration concepts.

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

While shale oil and shale gas deliver quick returns and product to markets, it’s the deepwater and other offshore discoveries that yield significant reserve additions and long-lasting production.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

While oil production has been going strong in Argentina’s Neuquén Basin for the past 100 years, geologists with Shell and YPF say the region’s true hydrocarbon potential has yet to be discovered.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The political and economic turmoil in Venezuela has taken its toll on every sector of society, geoscience education in particular. This concludes the EXPLORER’s two-part series on how geoscientists are faring in the ongoing crisis.

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)
DL Abstract

For well over a century there have been conflicting indications of the strength of the crust and of faults and what controls them.  Much of our ignorance comes quite naturally from the general inaccessibility of the crust to measurement--in contrast with our understanding of the atmosphere, which is much more accessible to observation as well as more rapidly changing.  Crustal strength is best understood in deforming sedimentary basins where the petroleum industry has made great contributions, particularly in deforming petroleum basins because of the practical need to predict. In this talk we take a broad look at key issues in crustal strength and deformation and what we can learn from boreholes, earthquakes, active fault systems, and toy models.

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Request a visit from John Suppe!

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

Paleozoic North America has experienced multiple mountain building events, from Ordovician to Permian, on all margins of the continent. These have had a profound effect on the resulting complex basins and their associated petroleum systems. Subsequent uplift, erosion and overprinting of these ancient systems impedes the direct observation of their tectonic history. However, the basin sedimentary records are more complete, and provide additional insights into the timing and style of the mountain building events. In this study, we employ ~90 1D basin models, ~30 inverse flexural models, isopachs, and paleogeographic maps to better understand the Paleozoic history of North America.

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Request a visit from Kurt W. Rudolph!

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

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

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)
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)
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)
DL Abstract

While there are many habitats that are associated with the deposition of organic-rich marine and lacustrine source rocks, one important pathway is linked to the onset of increased basin subsidence associated with major tectonic events. A key aspect is that this subsidence is spatially variable, with the uplift of basin flanks contemporaneous with the foundering of the basin center, resulting in a steeper basin profile.

Request a visit from Kurt W. Rudolph!

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)

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