Geological Risk and Uncertainty in Oil Exploration

Geological Risk and Uncertainty in Oil Exploration : Uncertainty, Risk and Strategy

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Oil exploration is a high-risk game. With worldwide drilling success of only 10 per cent and a typical price tag of USD15 million per well, it is no surprise the oil industry seeks better methods of managing financial risk. Geological Risk and Uncertainty in Oil Exploration answers this need by identifying the various uncertainties associated with basin analysis and incorporating this information into probabilistic models of basin evolution in relation to oil accumulation. Oil and gas explorationists, strategic resource economists, and petroleum professionals who deal with scientific uncertainty and risk issues will benefit from the books systematic treatment of how to quantify the uncertainty associated with a variety ofgeological, geophysical, and geochemical problems. The origin of uncertainties associated with flexural plate motion models, dynamical models of sediment evolution, thermal models of sediment maturation, hydrocarbon kinetic models, fault models, and models of basinal sediment fill and turbidite flows are detailed in the first section.
The subsequent incorporation of model uncertainties into probabilistic models of basin evolution and behavior constitutes the second half of the book. Throughout, the author interweaves a discussion of scientific probability, risk, and strategy within the context of improving our ability to assess strategic hydrocarbon resources.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 658 pages
  • 159 x 234.2 x 32.8mm | 1,239.13g
  • Academic Press Inc
  • San Diego, United States
  • English
  • index
  • 0124441742
  • 9780124441743

Table of contents

(Chapter Headings) Introduction. Models and Their Uncertainties: Flexural Plate Motion: Elastic, Plastic-Elastic and Thermo-Elastic Models. Dynamical Models of Sediment Evolution and Their Uncertainties. Thermal Models ofSediment Maturation and Their Uncertainties. Hydrocarbon Kinetic Models and Their Uncertainties. Variable Total Organic Carbon (TOC) and Variable Solubility Considerations. Faults: Open or Shut? Models of Basinal Sediment Fill, Turbidite Flows, and TheirUncertainties. Scientific Probability, Risk, and Strategy: The Uncertainty of Age. The Uncertainty of Information. Risking Scientific Results. Strategies for Model Use. Subject Index. Preface. Introduction. General. Examples of Reserve Assessments and Uncertainties: USA Hydrocarbon Shortfall to 2000 A.D. Ranges of Probable Uncertainty in USA Gas Resource Estimates: Basic Data and Probabilistic Interpretation. Risk-Weighted Estimatesof Likely Potential Reserves. Relative Importance of Each Category. Examples of Basin Analysis and Uncertainty: Overview of Basin Analysis: Burial History. Overview. Models and Consequences. An Inverse Procedure: Isostatic Reconstruction. A Pseudo-InverseProcedure: Fluid Flow/Compaction. Thermal History. Overview. Hydrocarbon Models: Forward Models of Paleoheat Flux. Inverse and Pseudo-Inverse Models. Hydrocarbon Generation, Migration, and Accumulation. Overview. Thermal History Models-Forward and Pseudo-Inverse. Basement Motion. Sea Level. Summary. Problems Associated with Burial History: Rate of Supply and Sediment Compaction. Basement Motion. Dynamical Salt Effects. Faults: Open or Closed?. Problems Associated With Thermal History: Present Day Temperature and Heat Flux. Paleoheat Flux and Paleotemperature. Problems Associated with Hydrocarbon Kinetics and Migration: Hydrocarbon Kinetics. Capillary Pressure Effects. Accumulation Effects. Control, Constraints, and Uncertainties. Assumptions and Ambiguities. Sensitivity, Noise, Resolution, and Uniqueness. Summary. Appendix A: Some Properties of a Log Normal Distribution. Exact Statements. Approximate Statements. Multiple Parameter Distributions. Sums of Parameters. Products of Parameters. Models and Their Uncertainties: Flexural Plate Motion: Elastic, Plastic-Elastic and Thermo-Elastic Models: Model Description: Elastic. Constant Plate Rigidity. Variable Plate Rigidity. Thermo-Elastic. Plastic-Elastic. Non-Plate Parameters. Numerical Considerations: Number of Loading Blocks. Accuracy and Stability. Sensitivity Analysis of Parameters. Application to the Central Chukchi Sea Basin, Alaska: Regional Geology. Modeling. Initial Basement Patterns. Appendix A: Elastic Model with Constant Plate Rigidity. Appendix B: Governing Equations for Elastic Flexure with Variable Rigidity. Governing Equations for Elastic-Plastic Flexure. Governing Equations for Thermo-Elastic Flexure. Dynamical Models of Sediment Evolution and Their Uncertainties: Introduction. Dynamical Tomography in One-Dimension: General Remarks. Control Functions and Non-Linear Tomography. Multiple Wells in a Basin, 2-D Dynamical Tomography. Combined Dynamical and Thermal Tomography. Synthetic Tests of Dynamical Indicator Tomography (DIT). A Single Well Case History: Navarin Basin COST No. 1 Well, Bering Sea, Alaska. A Multi-Well Case History: Navarin Basin, Alaska. A Synthetic Case History. Navarin Basin, Alaska. Geologic Description. Dynamical Tomographic ParameterDetermination. Discussion and Conclusions. Thermal Models of Sediment Maturation and Their Uncertainties: Forward Models of Paleoheat Flux. Inverse and Pseudo-Invese Models of Paleoheat Flux: General Observations. Mathematical Logic and Program Outline. Application to Inigok-1 Well, Alaska. Application to Two Australian Wells. Application to Barents Sea Well 7323/12. General Considerations. Resolution and Uncertainty. Transmittance Color Index and Vitrinite Reflectance. The Transmittance Color Index Technique. Empirical Connections between TCI and Vitrinite Reflectance. Thermal Inversion Procedures. Burial History of the COST G-2 Well. Geological Setting. Modeling of the Well. Thermal History Modeling. Pragmatic Procedure for TCI Thermal Inversion. Discussion. Application to the Multi-Well Experiment Site, Piceance Basin, Colorado. Geological Setting. Thermal Maturation and Burial History. Discussion. Appendix. Hydrocarbon Kinetic Models and Their Uncertainties: Introduction: Some Simple Kinetic Models. Autoclave Product Analysis: Mathematical Model. Input Data. Modeling Results. Behavior of Dij. Model Results Using D as a Function of Time. An Average Matrix. Summary. Residual Kerogen Analysis (S2): Mathematical Model. Basic Theory of S2 KineticInversion. Inversion of a Particular Kinetic Model. Comparison of Two Kinetic Models. Numerical Procedure for S2 Kinetic Inversion. Synthetic Tests. Sensitivity Test. Sensitivity Tests on M, Qo, BETA and A1. Parameter M. Parameter Qo. Parameter M and BETA. Parameters BETA and A1. Sensitivity Tests for Activation Energy. Case Studies. Well 30/6-5 in the Norwegian Sector, North Sea. Well Alaska State D1. Summary. Appendix A: Inversion Procedure for Equation 5.40. Appendix B: Approximate Evaluation of an Integral. A Set of Exact Solutions. Maximum Temperature Peak for a Mix of Two Kerogens. Resolution of Numerical Integrals and Physical Conditions. Variable Total Organic Carbon (TOC) and Variable Solubility Considerations: Variable TOC and Hydrocarbon Generation: Introduction. Methodology. Sensitivity of Hydrocarbon Generation. Various Average Richness. Variable Degrees of Spread. Various Thickness of the Source Layer. Various Burial Depths. Different Kerogen Types. Different Thermal Gradients.Discussion. Three-Phase Flow and Variable Solubility: Introduction. Migration Model. Flow, Pressures, Viscosities. Relative Permeabilities. Solubility Function. Effects of Solubility on Hydrocarbon Migration. Simulations of the Hammerfest Basin, Barents Sea. Set One Examples. Set Two Examples. Set Three Examples. Appendix A: Review of Definitions. Appendix B: Solubilities in a Three-Phase Fluid System. Faults: Open or Shut?: Introduction. Normal Slant Fault Model: Representation of Slant Fault Development. Fluid Flow/Compaction. A Basic Fault Model. Faulted Graben Formation withOpenFaults. Faulted Graben Formation withClosedFaults. Discussion. Application to an Off-shore Nigerian Basin: Geological Setting. Results. One-Dimensional Results. Well A.Well B. Two-Dimensional Results. Structure. Calibration of the Model. Control, Geohistory, and Tests of the Model. Discussion. Arcuate and Growth Fault Model: Introduction. Synthetic Studies. Closed Fault: Homogeneous Sandy-Shale. Open Fault: Homogeneous Sandy-Shale. Closed Fault: Interbedded Shale and Sand Formations. Open Fault: Interbedded Shale and Sand Formations. Application to a South Louisiana Roll-over Structure: Open Fault Case. Closed Fault Case. Discussion. Reverse Slant Fault Model. Appendix: Multiple Faults and Sedimentary Bed Motion. Models of Basinal Sediment Fill, Turbidite Flows, and Their Uncertainties: A Sequence Stratigraphic Sediment Fill Model. Sequential Simulation of Geologic Processes. Individual Processes: Erosion. Deposition. Compaction. Subsidence and/or Uplift. Results of the Simulation. Summary of Simulation Input. Discussion. A Turbidite Flow Model in Three Dimensions: Mathematical Formulation. Gravity Current Flow. Sediment Transport. Sediment Deposition. Erosion. Test Cases and Sensitivity. Test No. 1. Test No. 2. Discussion. Scientific Probability, Risk, and Strategy: The Uncertainty of Age: Introduction. Choices of Time-Scales. Influence of Time-Scales on Basin Modeling Results. Overpressure Development. Cumulative Oil Generation. Discussion. The Uncertainty of Information: Log-Derived Quantities: Introduction. Porosity from Bulk Density Logs. Water Saturation from Resistivity Logs. TOC from Sonic and Resistivity Logs. Log Responses: An Interview. Resistivity Log Response. Sonic Log. Combined Resistivity and Transit Time Response. Parameter Assessments. Estimates of TOC. Estimates of Parameters Needed to Determine TOC. Discussion. Erosion and Uplift Estimates: Introduction. Dynamical Rock Property Methods. Stacking Velocity, Sonic Velocity, and Density Log Methods. Drilling Exponent Methods. Dynamical Geometry Model Methods. Salt Diapir Mushroom Caps and Erosion Estimates. Data Description. Timing of Salt Uplift. Deformation of Formations. Modeling Results. Glacial Erosion Estimates. Discussion. Risking Scientific Results: Risk and Probability in Resource Assessment: Introduction. Cumulaton Probability and Error Assessment. Application to the Navarin Basin COST No. 1 Well. Porosity and Probability. Fleid-Pressure and Probability. Thermal Maturity and Probability. Application to Kugrua No. 1 Well, Alaska. Risk and Probability in Reserve Assessment: Introduction. A North Sea Illustration. Discussion. Drilling Risk for Sub-Salt Plays: Introduction. Physical Conditions in Formations Underlying Salt Sheets. Dynamical Models of Physical Properties in Sub-Salt Formations. Individual Pseudo-Well Behaviors. Pseudo-Well D. Pseudo-Well C. Pseudo-Well B. Pseudo-Well A. Sectional Behaviors. Discussion. Stochastic Behaviors: Model Behaviors. Burial History and Excess Pressure. Probability, Uncertainty, and Relative Importance. Cumulative Probability and Uncertainty. Relative Importance. Discussion and Conclusions. Appendix A. Appendix B. Strategies forModel Use: Basin Analysis Code and Data Availability: Introduction. Minimal Data Available. Moderate Data Available. Maximal Data Available. Analysis Required on a Prospect Scale. Analysis Required on a Fairway Scale. Analysis Required on a Regional Basin Scale. Integrated Basin Modeling and Seismic Data. Summary and Conclusions: Summary. Conclusions. Applications. Research. Commentary on Practical Illustrations. Scientific Risk and Relative Importance: Introduction. Basic Data and Probabilistic Interpretation. Risk-Weighted Potential Reserves: Norwegian Continental Shelf. Relative Importance of Barents Sea, North Sea, Norwegian Sea. Discussion. Integrated Scientific and Economic Risk. Subject Index.
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About I. Lerche

C. Ian Lerche is the author of more than 500 papers and has received numerous awards, including the Levorsen Award of the AAPG, the Nordic Professorship inPetroleum Geology, and the French Academie des Sciences Professorship in Geology. He has been a professor of geology in the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of South Carolina since 1984, and was associate chairman of the department 1985 1989. Between 1965 1981 he held positions of research associate, assistant professor, and associate professor at the University of Chicago. From 1981 1984 he worked as a senior scientist at Gulf Research and Development Co. He received a B.Sc. in physics in 1962 and a Ph.D. in astronomy in 1965 from the University of Manchester.
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