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Geomechanics and Fracture Analysis

Explorer Article

On the arid high plains of northeast Wyoming, the town of Gillette has become a bona fide boomtown. And it's coalbed methane creating the frenzy. The Powder River Basin has become the site of the hottest natural gas play in the country, a region most so-called experts wrote off as a wasteland for the gas.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Coalbed methane research and development has been a big story for over 20 years with virtually all the focus on the western United States. But what many folks don't know is that small 'mom and pop' shops have been quietly pioneering coalbed methane production in the Arkoma Basin in southeastern Oklahoma.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Wildcat Recollections Column

The special EXPLORER: A Century issue illustrates how at times the 'Story behind the story' is better than the story itself. In an effort to capture this flavor of exploration science and business, Marlan Downey describes his memories of some of the interesting fields found by teams he has been associated with during more than 40 years of exploration and production.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

After years of 'wheeling and dealing' international oil companies are finally beginning to sink exploratory wells in the Caspian Sea. Could the 'exploratory well of 1999' meet that prediction? The next two years should prove it.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Excitement grows as international companies jockey for position in the world's hottest play -- West Africa's deep water field.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

The basement fault block pattern started last month continues. This month the author attempts to substantiate the claim that many oil and gas fields are controlled by basement. Some geologists may concede that the evidence for underlying basement control is convincing.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

About five years ago a leader in horizontal drilling teamed with the U.S. Department of Energy's Energy and Technology Center and GRI in a $10 million research project. Their goal: Evaluate the technological and economic feasibility of drilling horizontal wells in fractured, but very-low permeability sandstone three miles below the sage brush flats of southwestern Wyoming. Today the team can now point to an unqualified success with the UPR Rock Island 4-H horizontal well.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

The phenomenon of paleo-OWCs may be more widespread than previously thought and could, in fact, be responsible for some previously unexplained exploration failures.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Avery Island sits atop the highest of five salt domes in southern Louisiana. Tourists not only find wildlife and beautiful scenery but salt, Tabasco® Sauce and a producing oil and gas field.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

Oil is produced from the Manderson Field, in Wyoming's Big Horn County, from a fracture system with possible significant lateral connectivity -- so characterizing the fractures in this field is of great importance.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Lviv, Ukraine
Tuesday, 31 May – Wednesday, 1 June 2022, 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
Sydney, Australia
Wednesday, 6 July Thursday, 7 July 2022, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

As we transition to a new commercial reality for our industries, there has never been a more important time for Earth Scientists to take a seat at the table. This workshop is designed to share our knowledge of the petroleum sector with other branches of the geosciences, while learning from their experiences. Join us for this hybrid online and in-person workshop on 6 July 2022.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Field Seminar
Barcelona, Spain
Wednesday, 30 March Thursday, 31 March 2022, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Trip leader(s): Josep Anton Muñoz, Pablo Granado and Eduard Roca Limit: 20 Participants The aim of this 2-day field trip is the recognition of the key structural features of a fold and thrust belt detached on salt that has resulted from the inversion of a previous passive margin. To achieve this objective, some of the key and most spectacular localities of the southern Pyrenees have been selected along the ECORS-Pyrenees transect. This is a reference cross-section provided that for many years a huge amount of geological and geophysical data sets has been collected and integrating into a kinematic model of the South-Pyrenean fold and thrust belt. Subsurface data (well logs and seismic sections) will be combined with field observations. One of the main characteristics of the southern Pyrenees is the preservation of the synorogenic sediments since the earlier stages of deformation, which not only provide time constraints but also allow us discussion of kinematics of fault-related folds and thrust systems. Finally, the mild contractional deformation permits deciphering the initial geometry of the rift system and the salt structures that configure the structural grain of the passive margin before the inversion, allowing discussion of the role that these structures play during the fold and thrust belt development. Itinerary: (day by day details of the trip) Day 1 Stop 1.1: The South-Pyrenean thrust front. Sant Llorenç de Montgai Structure of a frontal thrust system and related unconformities. Out of sequence thrusts and synorogenic sediments. The frontal thrust system of the South-central Pyrenees has been detached into the Triassic evaporites and involves a thin Mesozoic succession. It is characterized by an emergent thrust system during the sedimentation of upper Eocene and lower Oligocene continental sediments. Frontal thrusts were progressively buried by conglomerates, triggering a break-back thrusting sequence and the development of out-of-sequence thrusts bringing together strongly different Mesozoic successions, such as the Montroig thrust in the picture. Stop 1.2: The Ager basin and the Montsec thrust sheet. Fontllonga The Ager basin in the footwall of the Montsec thrust. The Montsec thrust sheet developed from the Paleocene to the Early Eocene as recorded by continental to shallow marine sediments deposited in its footwall (Ager basin) as well as in the Tremp-Graus piggy-back basin. The lower Eocene sediments of these basins grade westward into the slope succession filling the Ainsa basin at the footwall of the Montsec thrust. Stop 1.3: The frontal structure of the Montsec thrust sheet. Ametlla (optional: Montrebei) Fault-propagation fold related with the inversion of Early Cretaceous extensional faults and growth deltaic sediments in the footwall syncline. The Montsec thrust sheet involves the northern part of the Upper Cretaceous foreland basin characterised by a strong subsident turbiditic trough at the footwall of the Bóixols thrust. These turbidites grade southward into a carbonatic platform that constitutes the backbone of the Montsec Range (main ridge and cliff of the pictures). Underneath the Upper Cretaceous carbonates, some Early Cretaceous extensional faults are preserved in the hanging wall of the Montsec thrust, but others have controlled the development of a hanging wall frontal anticline. The geometry of this anticline as well as the structure of the growth sediments in the footwall Ager syncline are visible in the field. The subthrust geometry will be discussed integrating surface observations and the available seismic and well data. Overnight in Tremp Day 2 Stop 2.1: The Sant Corneli-Bóixols anticline Inversion of the rift margin The Sant Corneli-Bóixols anticline is the most prominent frontal structure of the Bóixols thrust sheet in the central Pyrenees. This fold trends east–west and crops out for greater than 40 km along strike. The Sant Corneli-Bóixols anticline involves a thick Mesozoic succession detached on top of Triassic evaporites. The prefolding sequence consists of up to 5 km of prerift, synrift, and postrift carbonates ranging in age from Jurassic to Upper Cretaceous. Synfolding Upper Cretaceous sediments start with the upper Santonian carbonates and continue with a succession of Campanian and Maastrichtian marls and turbidites. The Sant Corneli–Bóixols anticline is an example of an inversion fold developed along the rift margin of the Lower Cretaceous basin. Its geometry is related with the inverted extensional system. In particular, the three-dimensional geometry, including the saddles between culminations, is inherited from the previous transfer faults of the segmented rift margin. Available seismic data and 3 exploratory wells constrain the geometry at depth. Stop 2.2: The synororgenic Paleogene conglomerates Inverted Lower Cretaceous basin and Eocene-Oligocene synorogenic conglomerates at Collegats gorge. Stop 2.3 (optional): The Sopeira and Aulet minibasins. Sopeira Minibasins developed by extensional collapse and salt evacuation during the thermal subsidence at the southern Pyrenean rift margin. Inversion of these mini-basins at the early stages of Pyrenean contractional deformation during Late Cretaceous. Additional logistic information Transportation Transportation will be with a small bus, assisted by minivans to have access to some of the outcrops. Physical demand, equipment and safety This is an easy field trip with very easy and limited hikes to get to the outcrops. Outcrops will be from main sealed roads. Safety vests will be available, to be used by everybody of the group wherever required and asked to. There will be First Aid Kits available in each car during fieldwork. Climate The climate during mid-end November in the fieldwork area can be cold and rainy, although dry and sunny days may occur as well. The temperature for November in Tremp can range between 30C and 170C. Participants should be prepared in case we should encounter bad weather and you should bring warm and waterproof clothes and suitable hiking boots. -->

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Barcelona, Spain
Monday, 28 March Tuesday, 29 March 2022, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

This workshop brings together experts from academia and industry from a range of disciplines to share experiences, new approaches, new data and new ways of integrating information that can help in reducing the uncertainties related to the exploration activities in Thrust Belt Systems.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
VG Abstract

Microseismicity induced by hydraulic fracture stimulation of a horizontal well was mapped with a near-surface buried array. Distinct linear trends of events were not parallel to the direction of fast shear wave polarization measured in the reservoir with a crossed-dipole anisotropy tool. Analysis of core from a nearby well revealed numerous calcite-filled fractures that did not induce shear wave polarization, but did significantly impact the failure behavior of the reservoir rock during the stimulation treatment. Hydraulic fracture simulation with DFN modeling and source mechanism analysis supports the interpretation of reactivated existing fractures rather than the formation of hydraulically-induced tensile fractures.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

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