Explorer Division Column EMD

 

In virtually all regions of sustained production, the industry is steadily improving in situ recovery methods and reducing environmental impacts of bitumen and heavy oil production, especially those associated with surface mining.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
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Explorer Emphasis

 

For the oil industry, the most worrisome news coming out of the Middle East doesn’t involve geopolitics. It’s well known by now that Iran wants to increase production by at least 500,000 barrels of oil per day as the lifting of international sanctions allows it to resume crude exports. But Iran isn’t alone.

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While many are working to forecast when the price of oil might reach $80 a barrel again, renowned international strategist and geopolitical analyst Peter Zeihan, the author of “The Accidental Superpower,” predicts in stunning detail the rising and declining energy plays of 2025 and the countries that will ultimately triumph as the world’s leading producers.
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Innumerable geoscientists worldwide are familiar with the AAPG Giant Oil Fields publications. These AAPG members are spearheading the effort to compile “Giant Oil and Gas Fields of the Decade 2000-2010” featuring papers covering fields in areas around the globe.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
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Some highlights from international activity in 2014.

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In international exploration, the new normal is starting to look like the old normal. And 2014 looked a lot like the year before.

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Explorer Foundation Update

 

It has a new name, a new energy and a new lineup of experts, all primed to spread geoscience knowledge around the world. “It” is AAPG’s newly named Global Distinguished Lecture Program – emphasis on the “global” – which dates back to 1941 but continues to be the Association’s flagship initiative for offering the latest in geologic science to AAPG affiliated geological societies and universities.

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Explorer Historical Highlight

 

“One man was at the head waters of the River Amazon among the headshrinkers when he was recalled to come to Iraq; another came from Argentina, another from Mexico, still another had been in Romania, one in Indo-China, several in Venezuela and the East Indies.”

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VG Abstract

 

From 2009-2011, drilling of several exploration wells in the Topkhana and Kurdamir blocks in southeast Kurdistan, Iraq has delineated a giant oil and gas field with over 4 billion barrels of liquids and over 6 TCF of gas in place. This Oligocene-aged, carbonate-hosted hydrocarbon accumulation is a combination structural and stratigraphic trap. The entire Oligocene succession is composed of interbedded limestone and dolomites with marlstones which were deposited in a carbonate ramp setting. The Oligocene Kirkuk Group is regionally composed of middle ramp foraminiferal and red algae grainstones as well as coral boundstones/rudstones that likely form small bioherms.  Much of the reservoir has good matrix porosity, but low permeability. However, reservoir quality is highly dependent on both the original depositional facies as well as the degree of dolomitization. Predicting the spatial distribution of the best reservoir quality is challenging.

Early diagenesis includes micritization, cementation and compaction. These processes modify the depositional facies, but do not affect the porosity and permeability significantly. Dolomitization is the major diagenetic process that impacts reservoir quality. Oxygen and strontium isotopes suggest reflux dolomitization began near the end of the Oligocene and extended into the earliest Miocene. Full dolomitized facies have the best reservoir quality. Partially dolomitized facies generally have poorer permeability than non-dolomitized facies. Later diagenetic events, anhydrite and calcite cementation, have locally reduced permeability. The late stages of diagenesis are likely associated with the tectonic evolution of the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt. The spatial distribution of the best reservoir quality is dependent on where there is thorough dolomitization or preservation of original depositional porosity and permeability.

Several cores were collected that span the range of depositional environments, diagenetic overprint and reservoir quality. We will present examples of each of these facies as well as supporting material that leads us to our current understanding of the reservoir. Using this base of knowledge, we can continue to interpret the recently collected and processed 3-D seismic data to better predict the spatial distribution of the best reservoir quality rock.

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Jean Hsieh, Normand Begin, Maz Qayyum, Talisman Energy Inc., part of the Repsol Group

The Kurdamir-Topkhana field of Kurdistan is a carbonate oil and gas reservoir that was deposited in a passive margin ramp setting during the Oligocene. It is dominated by alternations of grainstone/boundstone/rudstone and packstone/wackestone beds. Reflux dolomitization early in the Miocene has noticeably increased, in places, both the porosity and connectivity of at least the Upper reservoir interval, as interpreted from seismic inversion data. The Lower reservoir interval was less affected by dolomitization and exhibits good porosity development within individual clinoforms, but much poorer connectivity between clinoforms. The entire reservoir interval is located within two anticlinal four-way closures formed above the roof thrust of an anti-formal stack developed within deeper Mesozoic carbonates; much of the observed fracture network is a result of this deformation. Modelling this complex reservoir presents significant challenges, not least because of the interdependency of many of the reservoir’s key characteristics.

The depositional and diagenetic history of the reservoir was determined through the study of several cores cut from the wells drilled in the field along with an understanding of the regional setting. A 3D seismic survey was inverted for acoustic impedance and the presence of gas-filled porosity can be imaged through the AI volume. Combining the understanding gleaned from the core and seismic data with the fracture data from borehole image logs, a detailed reservoir model was built. The strategy and conceptual models used for building this geostatistical model will be presented, along with our interim products and the lessons we have learned thus far on combining data of different scales.

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Field Seminar

Houston Texas United States 05 April, 2017 10 April, 2017 36578
 
Houston, Texas, United States
5-10 April 2017

In Conjunction with AAPG 2017 Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE)
This six day Pecos River Canyon trip uses the superb and remarkably laterally continuous outcrops of this upper Albian ramp-to-intrashelf basin profile to develop a process-based, sequence stratigraphic framework for analogous Cretaceous reservoir systems surrounding the Bab intrashelf basin in the Middle East.

Short Course

Houston Texas United States 06 April, 2017 07 April, 2017 35075
 
Houston, Texas, United States
6-7 April 2017

In Conjunction with AAPG 2017 Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE)
This course is designed to provide the industry geologist and engineer with a working knowledge of fracture characteristics and variability as they affect production in hydrocarbon reservoirs. This is a hands-on, applied course in fracture interpretation, description, analysis, and effects.

Houston Texas United States 06 April, 2017 07 April, 2017 35077
 
Houston, Texas, United States
6-7 April 2017

In Conjunction with AAPG 2017 Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE)
This two-day workshop provides an introduction to the application of carbonate facies, diagenesis, and seismic sequence stratigraphy to exploration and production. This includes marine, and conventional and unconventional carbonate reservoirs.

Houston Texas United States 01 April, 2017 02 April, 2017 34989
 
Houston, Texas, United States
1-2 April 2017

In Conjunction with AAPG 2017 Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE)
The course content will cover both the basics of biomarker interpretation and application and advanced geochemical technologies.

Houston Texas United States 01 April, 2017 02 April, 2017 34991
 
Houston, Texas, United States
1-2 April 2017

In Conjunction with AAPG 2017 Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE)
The course content will cover both the basics of biomarker interpretation and application and advanced geochemical technologies.

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