Explorer Geophysical Corner

It is well known that machine learning is based on complex statistics and programming, which for most of us, are not straightforward. When it comes to choosing the best technique, either supervised or unsupervised, the decision might not be easy and sometimes may even be overwhelming. Where do you even begin? Luckily, much research has been done recently to help geologists find an ideal starting algorithm, or the best machine-learning package. Here we discuss how just focusing on your choice of parameterization in a given machine-learning algorithm is one easy way to obtain better results without having to switch from technique to technique.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

The small town of Cunningham, Kansas lies about 65 miles straight west of Wichita on U.S. Highway 54. It was incorporated in 1887 as a commercial center for farmers and ranchers in that part of south-central Kansas. Hard winter wheat was the main cash crop, while herds of beef and dairy cattle were a close second source of income. This activity characterized the culture of Cunningham into the early years of the 20th century. That is, until a new industry was introduced to Kansas when, in 1915, oil was discovered in the El Dorado field northeast of Wichita.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Historical Highlights

There are times when national and local forces combine in such a way that the entire hydrocarbon value chain is realized in a frontier area over the course of only a few years. Such was the case for the natural gas fields in southwestern Wyoming over the decades of the 1920s to the ‘40s.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

The geoscience community at large now has access to a major trove of data gathered by ExxonMobil in the 1980s and ‘90s. ExxonMobil will share the results of its behind-the-outcrop coring program through a website created by the Society for Sedimentary Geology.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Shell has made a significant oil and gas discovery at the Graff-1 well offshore Namibia. The well results have so far shown at least two reservoirs in the Upper Cretaceous, with a light oil column reported in the Santonian, in high quality channel sands. This discovery is in the deep water of the southernmost sector of the Orange Basin offshore Namibia.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

When the International Petroleum Technology Conference comes to Saudi Arabia in February, the technical program will include a significant look at both unconventional oil and gas and conventional tight oil in the Middle East. Those are two different concepts in the region and the distinctions are important. The Middle East holds a large conventional tight oil resource, now emerging as a serious focus for development. With so much recent attention devoted to unconventional resources, conventional tight oil could be considered an overlooked sibling.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Initially in charge of funding energy research and resource assessments, Houseknecht received a fateful telephone call in 1995 from former USGS Research Geologist Don Gautier, who asked him to participate in a field session in Alaska. Now, 26 years later, David Houseknecht has been awarded the Wallace E. Pratt Memorial Award for the best AAPG Bulletin article in 2019, which outlines a detailed geological framework of the North Slope to explain the geology of recent discoveries and delineate the potential for future discoveries.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Emphasis Article

Analog traps are an important part of any geoscientist’s tool kit, and there is no better source than understanding how giant fields form and have been found by past and current generations of explorers. My sojourn into learning about these big fields was in the mid-1980s at Amoco in Denver, part of a task force charged with understanding how to better explore for big, subtle, stratigraphic and combination traps. Meeting weekly for lunch for several months, a team of us reviewed Amoco’s proprietary “Red Book” – a collection of summaries of giant fields worldwide, which included maps and rock properties, but, more importantly, the strategy used in finding each field. In addition, we pulled heavily from AAPG giant fields publications compiled from hundreds of AAPG volunteers.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Geophysical Corner

This study is primarily based on a 3-D seismic dataset that covers 1,107 square kilometers of the deepwater Ceará Basin. For this demonstration, the seismic cube was cropped and extends over an area of 765 square kilometers. It covers part of Premier Oil, Cepsa, Chevron and Ecopetrol exploration blocks, as well as ANP’s blocks of permanent offer. Here we present a broad overview of the seismic geomorphology of the study area aiming at delineating the turbidite channels, as the sands are deposited in the channels and can accumulate the hydrocarbons, which can be exploited for the benefits of the petroleum industry, as well as discuss a pitfall associated with the cropping of seismic data.

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American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Explorer Article

Super basin applications and analogs continue to drive the future. As we learn more about them, we discover how valuable super basins are to exploration and development. As a result, AAPG continues its initiative to showcase some of the world’s greatest petroleum basins with the fourth Global Super Basins Leadership Conference.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online Certificate Course
Tuesday, 1 January 2013, 12:00 a.m.–1:00 a.m.

There are approximately 1,000 oil and gas fields in the world that have been classified as 'giant,' containing more than 500 million barrels of recoverable oil and /or 3 trillion cubic feet of gas.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)
Online e-Symposium
Thursday, 19 March 2015, 2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

A detailed biostratigraphic analysis and stratigraphic framework of the Paleocene and Eocene Chicontepec Formation in the Tampico-Misantla basin, onshore eastern Mexico, was conducted using 33 wells.

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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