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Explorer Article

During these times of global economic uncertainty, political turmoil and climate change discussions, some, both inside and outside the energy industry, question the value of investing in oil and gas exploration. At the same time, new discoveries, technological advances and collaborative partnerships make exploration more exciting than ever. ExxonMobil Exploration Company President Stephen Greenlee addressed these parallel perspectives during “The Future of Oil and Gas Exploration,” the annual Michel T. Halbouty Lecture he delivered at the AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition in San Antonio in May.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

The shale revolution was made possible because there was technology that allowed developers to drill and complete wells capable of producing oil and gas affordably. Through the years, industry, because of that technology, successfully focused on drilling longer wells, pumping more sand and increasing the number of fracturing stages per well. The question facing industry experts these days is: What will the next breakthrough be that will produce even more efficient and affordable oil and gas?

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Over the past 10 years, tight oil boosted the United States back to world prominence in crude oil production. Today’s projections tie future U.S. production levels to continued strength in tight oil output, especially from the Permian Basin. Considering the importance of unconventional oil plays in the overall U.S. production picture, it’s useful to examine the outlook for tight oil. And in the Permian Basin, that outlook isn’t as bright as previously thought.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Latin America Blog

Geoscientists and engineers from seven countries gathered to discuss opportunities at the multidisciplinary workshop in Rio

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Middle East Blog

The Siliciclastic Reservoirs of the Middle East GTW is now offering two optional field trips designed for attendees to learn more about the geology in the Muscat area. Discover the Al Khawd Formation on the 27th October or sign up for the Cambrian-Ordovician Amdeh Formation Field Trip taking place on the 31st October.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Asia Pacific Blog

AAPG and EAGE are proud to jointly present the first Geosciences conference in Papua New Guinea in two decades. Endorsed by Department of Energy, PNG and supported by the PNG Chamber of Mines & SEAPEX, the conference will review the petroleum geology of Papua New Guinea in its tectonic setting as host to petroliferous marginal Phanerozoic basins on the northeast margin of the Australian continent.

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

Brené Brown, the well-known social science researcher from the University of Houston, has a new special on Netflix where she speaks to the differences between “belonging” versus “fitting in.” I heard AAPG and Division of Environmental Geosciences in that talk, both the good and the bad. According to Brown, we advance when we are part of something greater and connect to others, but not at the cost of losing who we are or what we value as individuals. One only has to consider many institutions with rigid and tired identities who struggle with membership as their group ages to see how this is true.

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

The application of technology and analytical techniques has always been a hallmark of our profession, but this year ACE had special sessions dedicated to machine learning and AI in petroleum geoscience. The trend toward increased automation and greater efficiency in our workflows will affect how the petroleum explorationist works in the decades to come. Helping our members prepare for this future is something to which AAPG is committed.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

Prestack simultaneous impedance inversion was introduced at the turn of this century with the objective of characterization of target rock intervals in terms of elastic properties, which in turn could be associated with petrophysical properties such as porosity, fluid saturation and volume of shale.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

I landed in Bogota in June 1963 for employment with Texpet Colombia. Exploration of the asymmetrical Putumayo sub-Andean Basin had begun in the 1940s when Texpet sent exploration geologists to document any surface outcrops, but the area was still too remote for further exploration. Ten years later, Texpet drilled some two dozen core wells without finding oil. Then, in 1962, exploration picked up and the company moved a houseboat from the Amazon up the Rio Putumayo to a site upstream from the small, remote river town of Puerto Asis.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
DL Abstract

This presentation is a survey of subsurface machine learning concepts that have been formulated for unconventional asset development, described in the literature, and subsequently patented. Operators that utilize similar subsurface machine learning workflows and other data modelling techniques enjoy a competitive advantage at optimizing the development of unconventional plays.

Request a visit from Shane Prochnow!

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

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)
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 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

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)
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

Why H₂ is generated in subsurface? Which are the reactions and the promising geological setting? Example in countries where H₂ have already been found: Australia, Brazil. Kinetic reactions: i.e., Is the natural H₂ renewable? What we don't know yet about this resource and about the H₂ systems (generation/transport/accumulation). Overview of the current landscape (subsurface law, permitting, E&P activity)

Request a visit from Isabelle Moretti!

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)
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)

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