Explorer Historical Highlights

The Ayoluengo field was the first commercial oil discovery in Spain and more than 50 years later remains the only onshore oilfield in the Iberian Peninsula. The field was discovered in 1964 and is still producing.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

The main goal for shale resource characterization is usually the identification of sweet spots, which represent the most favorable drilling targets. Such sweet spots can be identified as those pockets in the target formation that exhibit high total organic carbon (TOC) content, as well as high brittleness. As there is no direct way of computing TOC using seismic data, we adopt indirect ways for doing so.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Owing to the U.S. shale boom, interest and activity in unconventional E&P has spread internationally. Perhaps the most unexpected locale for these types of plays is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Every major producer in the Middle East will be represented at AAPG’s upcoming GEO 2016 conference in Bahrain next month.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

“Oil fingerprinting,” as it’s called, is indispensable when there is commingled production from different formations.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

With Shell abandoning its exploration plans in the Chukchi Sea in September and Statoil following suit in November, many might believe that the North Slope Basin off the northern coast of Alaska has been condemned. Yet those who have put decades into studying the geology of Alaska’s North Slope and Outer Continental Shelf believe the opposite.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Europe Blog

Time is running out – the early bird deadline is approaching. Register by 29 February to save £119 on a full three-day APPEX Global registration.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Latin America Blog

The first international book published on the petroleum geology and hydrocarbon potential of the Colombian Caribbean Margin is now available for purchase in the AAPG Store.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Middle East Blog

This is your last chance to register for the Source Rocks of the Middle East GTW, taking place in Abu Dhabi, UAE on 25-26 January. Do not miss out this exciting workshop!

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Europe Blog

Be a presence at APPEX Global 2016: book your booth now.

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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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

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