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Explorer Director’s Corner

Geoscientists play a lot of different roles in our industry, but foremost, we are technical and scientific experts. We understand the rocks, their depositional history and their potential to generate hydrocarbons.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer President’s Column

Six months have passed since I started writing and speaking on sustainable development. While writing this column at the end of the year for publication in the January EXPLORER to start the new year, it seems appropriate to take a closer look at sustainable development and petroleum basins from both past and future perspectives.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

Little more than a novelty when first discovered, helium has become a key commodity. It is used extensively in medical cryogenics, analytical and lab applications, breathing mixtures, as a lift gas, for arc welding, leak detection and, contrary to popular belief, only a little is used to inflate party balloons. There are few substitutes for helium and so, as its applications have become more common, demand has grown and supply is struggling to match demand.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The Energy Minerals Division celebrated its 25th Anniversary in 2002. The Division emphasized to the AAPG membership that it was AAPG’s center of activity on energy minerals and unconventional energy resources. EMD originally focused primarily on coal, uranium, geothermal energy, oil shales and tar sands. However, its focus expanded and in 2002, EMD’s most active unconventional resource areas were coalbed methane, gas hydrates, and unconventional energy economics.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Mountains and beaches. Colonial cities, farming communities, indigenous villages. Central Eastern Mexico is full of diverse cultures and landscapes. It is also home to the Tampico-Misantla super basin, a 25,000-square-kilometer area that has produced oil since 1869.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Its present lull notwithstanding, the Permian Basin has been a production behemoth for years. The archetypal super basin in West Texas is the primary growth driver in U.S. oil production and may become the largest oil patch in the world over the next decade.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Learn! Blog

Groundwater resources are valuable resources, especially in arid climates such as in South Africa where in a dry year they may receive no rain at all. Welcome to an interview with Surina Esterhuyse, who speaks to us about the special challenges facing water scarce countries and her particular experience in South Africa.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Foundation Update

AAPG’s historic Distinguished Lecture program has undergone a revolutionary transformation aimed at extending the program’s accessibility, audience and reach.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

Generally, the fine-grained shale rocks are found to be composed of 50 to 70 percent clay, anywhere between 25 to 40 percent silt- and clay-sized quartz, and 5 percent of minerals including feldspars and carbonates, comprising the total rock volume. A variety of techniques such as X-ray diffraction, infrared spectroscopy and electron microscopy are available, which help us understand the type of clay minerals present in a shale sample.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

In 2017, AAPG celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding in Tulsa, Okla. This same year was also the 40th anniversary of the establishment the AAPG Energy Minerals Division. The EMD has evolved as an organization over the past 40 years to reflect the changes in the mix of resources fueling the world’s ever-increasing energy demand.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Short Course
Bogotá , Colombia
Thursday, 10 November Friday, 11 November 2022, 8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

This 2-day, in-person course describes the range and variability in deepwater sedimentary systems and equips participants to build predictive models of subsurface geology for more successful exploration and development. A primary goal of this course is to enable subsurface teams to more effectively characterize and rank deepwater/offshore projects on a regional and global scale.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Muscat, Oman
Monday, 16 January Wednesday, 18 January 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

The sedimentary basins of the Middle East have been proved to contain vast hydrocarbon reserves, sourced by some of the most prolific petroleum systems in the world. This is the product of a range of factors, not least the long-lived, relative stability of the Arabian Plate and the presence of multiple, prolific organic source rocks. This workshop will address these and other subjects and to discuss the main challenges present in our current understanding of petroleum systems in the Middle East.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Monday, 7 November Wednesday, 9 November 2022, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Join us for the 2nd AAPG Integrated Emerging Exploration Concepts GTW, which will be held in Dhahran on 7-9 November 2022. The workshop will emphasize the importance of developing new approaches and adopting best practices to generate and mature new exploration ideas.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Lviv, Ukraine
Thursday, 21 September Friday, 22 September 2023, 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
Lisbon, Portugal
Thursday, 18 May Friday, 19 May 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

This 2-day conference brings together diverse experts working on modern and ancient turbidite, MTDs, contourite and hybrid/mixed systems in order to improve the present-day knowledge, models and predictive power.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Workshop
Manama, Bahrain
Monday, 26 September Wednesday, 28 September 2022, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

The workshop aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the source rocks in the Middle East. The technical program is developed in a way that coves the depositional environments and transport processes, basin modeling and detailed rock characterisation including geochemisty, geomechanics and petrophysics.

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)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 30 October 2014, 10:00 a.m.–11:00 a.m.

Cross disciplinary workflows play an important part of successful characterization of shale reservoirs. This course discusses how the artificial kerogen maturity of organic-rich Green River shale affects the petrophysical, micro-structural, geochemical and elastic properties.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 21 February 2013, 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, 1 October 2020, 11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.

Join AAPG Asia Pacific to hear Agus Ramdahn, PhD to hear about a method of combining Bowers Method with density-sonic cross plots to estimate overpressure in the shelfal area of the Lower Kutai Basin This webinar will be presented via Zoom on Thursday 1 October at 11:00 Singapore Time

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Tuesday, 14 April 2020, 4:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.

The Upper Jurassic (Oxfordian) Smackover Formation is one of the most prolific oil and gas producers in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico coastal plain, where it deposited in a proximal carbonate ramp. This study is a comprehensive characterization of the depositional environment of the Smackover based on 3D seismic and well data from wells in the Vocation and Appleton oil fields located in the Conecuh and Manila Sub-basins in southwest Alabama.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Wednesday, 26 May 2021, 7:00 p.m.–8:30 p.m.

Join us for 'Pivoting 2021: Imaging Technologies'. Panelists will discuss new ways to acquire data that is then processed into interpretable images, and they will discuss the technologies as well as the techniques. Webinar will be presented via Zoom 7pm - 8:30pm CDT, 26 May 2021.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Wednesday, 10 June 2020, 11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.

Gil Machado is a Petroleum Exploration Geologist with a Ph.D in stratigraphy and source rock characterization. Gil's presentation 'Reducing Uncertainty and Increasing Chances of Success Using Biostratigraphy', will explore the role of biostratigraphy in the exploration workflow. Several success cases from around the World will be detailed, showing the uses of this discipline for sedimentation age determination, paleoenvironmental interpretation and source rock characterization. Join Gil Machado via Zoom on June 10 at 12:00 GMT+1

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 15 March 2012, 12:00 a.m.–12:00 a.m.

This e-symposium presents techniques for predicting pore pressure in seals by examining case studies from the Gulf of Mexico and incorporating the relationship between rocks, fluids, stress, and pressure.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Tuesday, 28 April 2020, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

Em 2011 e 2015, apresentei uma avaliação do potencial de petróleo ainda por descobrir (YTF – Yet to Find) na região brasileira do pré-sal, utilizando uma ferramenta de modelagem de exploração e um método de simulação estocástica (Monte Carlo) para estimar as acumulações potenciais já descobertas e as restantes para ser descobertas. Embora da metodologia robusta usada, é compreensível que, à luz dos novos preços do petróleo, muito mais baixos, a avaliação do óleo YTF possa ser questionada sobre o quão realista poderia ser, num cenário prolongado de preço baixo do petróleo. Em 2016, apresentei essa avaliação, para preços do petróleo abaixo de US$ 50/bbl. Agora, com os preços do petróleo ainda mais baixos que podem representar um novo cenário de redução por mais tempo, volto a revisar as avaliações anteriores. Os resultados são apresentados no contexto de importantes implicações geopolíticas para em regiões do mundo onde os recursos de petróleo e gás provavelmente continuarão viáveis, apesar dos preços baixos do petróleo, e os rearranjos geopolíticos que isso implica.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Webinar
Virtual Webinar
Wednesday, 28 October 2020, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

There are many studies that talk about the economies of scale associated to cloud storage that make it so cheap. Yet oil and gas companies managing petabytes of seismic data are not jumping on the cloud storage bandwagon. In this talk, Suri Bhat, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Bluware, will explore why moving petabytes of seismic data to the cloud is difficult. He will share some of the true costs of managing large data sets in the cloud and why it doesn’t add significant business value. In the same way that lifting and shifting legacy tools and services to the cloud yields little value, moving seismic data to the cloud also yields little value. It isn’t until applications, workflows and even the data storage formats are re-engineered that real business value and even cost saving can be found. He will explore how this is possible today with open file formats. Webinar presented via Zoom on 28 October 2020 at 12:00 London time (UTC-0)

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Assistant Professor of Hydrogeology

The Boone Pickens School of Geology at Oklahoma State University invites applications for a tenure- track, assistant professor position in physical hydrogeology. The anticipated start date is August 1, 2023. The successful applicant must have a Ph.D. degree in geosciences or a related field at the time of appointment. Postdoctoral experience is preferred. The School encourages applications from candidates from underrepresented groups in the geosciences.

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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