Explorer President’s Column

We have been through a month of lockdown due to the coronavirus, and in that time, we have seen oil prices go into negative numbers. This is paper barrels! The commodity market has a place in our business and it’s helpful to understand the history and how the commodity market has changed our industry.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The Rocky Mountain Section of AAPG is pleased to announce the winners of its Presentation Awards for the section’s 2019 Annual Conference which was held in Cheyenne, Wyo. The Presentation Awards are given to those who present the best technical papers at the annual meeting. Authors gave more than 125 oral and poster presentations on the geology of the Rocky Mountain region at the Cheyenne meeting. Judging on technical merit and presentation determined the winners.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

Shale resource plays are associated with low permeability, so hydraulic fracturing is required for their stimulation and production. In order to enhance the flow of fluids with hydraulic fracturing, it is vital to understand the stress field distribution. The efficiency and effectiveness of a hydraulic fracture stimulation are predicated on adequate horizontal well placement in the subsurface. For that purpose, the horizontal wells are usually drilled in the direction of minimal horizontal stress so that hydraulic fracturing takes place in the direction of maximal stress that ensures better reservoir contact and production, which also depends on how a complex fracture network is created by induced fractures.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The maturing carbon market is a major driver for carbon capture, utilization and storage projects. Both the subsurface technical knowledge and related data sets of the petroleum industry are major inputs required for the world to successfully move toward a carbon-neutral and sustainable energy future. To that end, one of the goals of the Division of Environmental Geosciences in representing AAPG is to promote what petroleum geologists can offer during an evolving energy future.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

In 1994, while chairman and CEO of Barrett Resources, I got a call from my good friend Ray Thomasson, who said, “Bill I have a prospect Larry McPeek has worked up in the Wind River Basin that you might find interesting.” I’d worked every feature of geology in Wyoming’s Wind River Basin and was familiar with about every well drilled there during my career, so I frankly considered myself somewhat of an expert on the basin ... The Cave Gulch Prospect was located along the Owl Creek Thrust in a geologically complex area.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Proposals to ban hydraulic fracturing in the United States have drawn a wide range of responses from analysts, with projected effects ranging from cataclysmic to trifling. Legislation to phase out fracturing was introduced in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives earlier this year. That turned up the heat on the controversy, as did the emergence of Sen. Bernie Sanders as the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination. Sanders and Sen. Jeff Merkley introduced a bill titled the “Ban Fracking Act” in January.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
wwwUpdate Blog

The Honors and Awards programs provide a means for recognizing outstanding achievements and contributions by professional geologists, especially in the area of exploration for petroleum and energy mineral resources, and by other professionals who further the goals and objectives of the industry's science, profession, and this Association. The motivation toward scientific and professional achievement which such recognition stimulates is much to be desired.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

I was involved in the 2006 discovery of Parshall Oil Field in the Bakken reservoir of North Dakota, one of the largest oil fields in North America. My prospect idea was based on meager geologic data that included two key wells and used the potential of new horizontal drilling technology.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

As basins such as the Permian have crushed the concept of “peak oil” by doubling past production rates using new ideas and technology, their newly dubbed “super basin” status is inspiring operators on practically every continent to do the same.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Now referred to as a “super basin,” the Gulf of Mexico Basin has joined other top super basins in the world that, despite their maturity, have the potential or have proven to be significant new plays all over again. The driving force behind this renaissance is, for a large part, the evolution of technology over the last two decades that has jumpstarted both offshore and onshore basins.

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
Tuesday, 14 April 2020, 6:00 p.m.–8:00 p.m.

La Formación Smackover del Jurásico Superior (Oxfordiano) es una de las productoras de petróleo y gas más prolíficas de la llanura costera del noreste del Golfo de México, depositada en una rampa de carbonato proximal. Este estudio es una caracterización integral del ambiente de depositación de la Formación Smackover basada en datos sísmicos 3D y de pozos en los campos Vocation y Appleton situados en las subcuencas de Conecuh y Manila, en el suroeste de Alabama.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 27 August 2020, 3:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.

There are over 300 known active onshore mud volcanoes globally, and many more offshore. Mud volcanoes are subsurface fluid escape features in which high pore pressures drive fluids, gases, and subsurface sediments to the surface. This talk will summarize mud volcanoes around the world and examine mud volcano plumbing systems and their link to petroleum systems.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 28 April 2011, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

The Niobrara Petroleum System of the U.S. Rocky Mountain Region is a major tight petroleum resource play.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 25 August 2011, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This e-symposium provides highlights of the hydraulic fracturing mechanics, analysis, and design, and is derived from a two and one-half (2-1/2) day course which is designed for drilling, completion, production engineers, engineering technicians, geologists, well-site and completion supervisors, and managers, who desire to possess a comprehensive and integral knowledge of Hydraulic Fracturing.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 13 December 2012, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

The course will review core data, petrophysical comparisons, rock physics modeling (including pseudo logs and mechanical properties).

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 30 July 2020, 8:00 a.m.–10:00 a.m.

Hear panelists’ views on how COVID-19 has affected the legal, financial and technological sectors of the energy industry and what they expect for the future. Topics include energy markets, public policy, infrastructure, transportation, corporate culture, digitalization and the energy transition. Send questions and comments for speakers, then make your voice heard in virtual roundtables opening 10 minutes after the panel discussion. Forum registration is free of charge thanks to support from our sponsors. Forum Registration

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 11 November 2010, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This e-symposium is ideal for geologists, geophysicists, engineers and other geoscientists who are involved in gas shale exploration and production.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Thursday, 19 November 2020, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

Another in a series of AAPG Visiting Geoscientist Presentations organized by the Manchester University AAPG Student Chapter. Sponsored by BP. Presented by Visiting Geoscientist Elda Miramontes, University of Bermen, Germany Webinar presented via Zoom on 19 November at 5:00pm (GMT-0)

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)
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)
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

Climate change is not only happening in the atmosphere but also in the anthroposphere; in some ways the former could drive or exacerbate the latter, with extreme weather excursions and extreme excursions from societal norms occurring all over the earth. Accomplishing geoscience for a common goal – whether that is for successful business activities, resource assessment for public planning, mitigating the impacts of geological hazards, or for the sheer love of furthering knowledge and understanding – can and should be done by a workforce that is equitably developed and supported. Difficulty arises when the value of institutional programs to increase equity and diversity is not realized.

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Request a visit from Sherilyn Williams-Stroud!

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

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

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

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

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

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

Physics is an essential component of geophysics but there is much that physics cannot know or address. 

Request a visit from John Castagna!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

Related Interests

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