Subsurface Mapping

Mark Bouman 
Evert Uitentuis 
5 days

Business context

A profitable development of an oil or gas field starts with a good understanding of the subsurface. As part of a subsurface evaluation team the geophysicists and geologists interpret subsurface data and provide geological models that form the basis for development planning. Construction of maps and sections of the subsurface, including integration of seismic and well data, forms an important part of the evaluation. The result should also provide illustration material on which management can make decisions.

Computers are frequently used to construct subsurface models and calculate reserves. A check for consistency with structural models and against a quick manual evaluation should always be done. This course provides the tools for executing such checks.

Who should attend

Geologists, petroleum engineers and geophysicists involved with the development of oil and gas reservoirs. Geologists needing knowledge of Correlation and Structural/Stratigraphic mapping. 

Participants should have have prior understanding of the fundamentals of Applied Petroleum Geology.

Course content

  • Geological concepts, global tectonics
  • Geophysical methods, production seismic
  • Hydrocarbon basin mapping and analysis
  • Planning, gathering and management of geological data
  • Well log correlation
  • Mapping of reservoir parameters and structure, integration of seismic data
  • Structural styles, trapping conditions
  • Subsurface stresses and pressures
  • Reservoir architecture, geological modelling
  • Oil and gas volumetric calculations
  • Fault dimensions, properties and sealing capacity

Learning, methods and tools

At the end of the course participants will be able to apply geological concepts, construct maps and sections and validate computer-generated interpretations. They will be able to calculate subsurface volumes and assess their uncertainties. They will have knowledge on fault dimensions and properties and learn how to perform fault seal analysis. And they will have acquired practical experience by working on actual field studies in teams. Dedicated exercises form part of the daily program to ensure participants understand the concepts discussed.

Day by day programme

Day 1

Introduction of participants and trainer, course objectives and overview

Exploration and Production (E&P) development projects, Basin analysis

Development Activities in E&P, Project life cycles

The role of subsurface maps and models in E&P projects

Principles of Petroleum Geology, structural regimes

  • Hydrocarbon basins/plays
  • Plate tectonics, structural regimes
  • Sedimentary cycles and sequences
  • Sedimentary environments overview
  • Origin of hydrocarbons, source-rocks and maturity
  • Hydrocarbon traps, spill-points

Various Group Exercises (Correlation and Field Appraisal)

Day 2

Seismic and reservoir property data

Seismic data gathering, processing and interpretation

  • Exercise: Interpretation mapping from seismic lines
  • Robin Field Exercise: Field reserves and appraisal

Reservoir properties, data gathering (Logs/ Cores) and mapping with exercise on property maps (Thickness, EOC)

Petrophysics (Notional) with exercise

Day 3

Structural styles, maps and sections

Stratigraphic Principles, Robin Field Exercise on correlation

Structural Geology, stresses and pressures

  • Group exercise: subsurface pressures
  • Robin Field Exercise: Structural map and section
  • Robin Field Exercise: Integration of pressure data

Day 4

Volumetric calculations and subsurface uncertainties

  • Robin Field Exercise: Net sand map
  • Robin Field Exercise: Field volumetric calculations

Introduction to Computer Mapping & Modelling 

Day 5

Faults, Fault construction and Sealing Aspects

  • Exercise: Fault Plane Analysis
  • Exercise: Fault Determination

Subsurface Development Planning (optional)

Robin Field Exercise: Subsurface development

Course review and round-up