“Making Sound Decisions,” 3-D Seismic Symposium Set for March 5th, 2013

Title: “Making Sound Decisions,” 3-D Seismic Symposium Set for March 5th, 2013: Preview: 19th Annual 3-D Seismic Symposium, Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

Author: Compiled by Steve Jensen

Publication: The Outcrop, February 2013, p. 16-17, 19

The 19th Annual 3-D Seismic Symposium, jointly sponsored by the Rocky Mountain  Association of Geologists and the Denver Geophysical Society, will be held Tuesday, March 5th, 2013 at the Downtown Sheraton Hotel in Denver, Colorado. Please note the new venue, chosen to provide the Symposium with additional seating capacity and an expanded vendor area. This year’s symposium is co-chaired by David Scolman and Jim Thorson.

The 3-D Symposium will highlight 12 presentations, concentrating on case histories in  resource plays using large-scale 3-D seismic surveys. Case studies include Rocky Mountain projects in the Niobrara, Bakken, and Piceance, along with other analog plays from the US (Fayetteville, Marcellus, and Eagle Ford), and Western Canadian Basins. Attendees to this year’s Symposium will witness the most up-to-date concepts and  workflows in our industry, with many of the talks being presented here in public for the first time. Early Registration is currently available by contacting either DGS or RMAG societies (www.rmag.org, http://www.denvergeo.org), or via the 3-D Symposium website http://www.3dseismicsymposium.com.

This year’s Keynote Speaker will be Thomas Jorden, Chairman, CEO, and President of Cimarex Energy. His talk, entitled “Geophysics from the Corner Office,” allows Tom to provide his unique perspective on 3-D seismic and resource plays as a career geophysicist with Bachelor and Master degrees from the Colorado School of Mines who has now risen to the top of the corporate ladder.

The meeting will begin with our Kickoff Speaker: Dr. Mark Zoback, Benjamin M. Page Professor of Geophysics at Stanford University. Mark will talk on “Reservoir Geomechanics Applied to Stimulation of Shale Gas/Tight Gas/Tight Oil Reservoirs,” which he should be well versed in since he literally wrote the book on the topic.Highlighted will be the latest information on the industries’ use of geomechanical data to maximize the hydrocarbon recovery in several North American basins.

Eric Von Lunen, a Senior Geophysical Advisor for Nexen, Inc. will present “Utilizing Geophysical Concepts in Unconventional Resource Evaluation.” Resource plays require information on reservoir quality, fracability, fracture networks, and the stimulated rock volume to estimate reserves. Seismic data including inversion and attributes like curvature, coherence, and microseismic data can help quantify this information, but they require a focus on trace-to-trace fidelity and noise suppression. Using examples from Western Canadian Basins, Eric will discuss the premium acquisition programs and strict processing flows necessary to help quantify reserve estimates.

Glenn Winters, Chief Geophysicist for Fasken Oil and Ranch, Ltd., will discuss “Obstacles  and Pitfalls for the Everyday Interpreter.” The presentation will show data examples of common interpreter errors in dealing with unconventional resource plays. Focus will be on the reprocessing of seismic data, which data volumes to use and when, use of depth conversion, and the integration of microseismic into 3-D volumes. A comparison of two microseismic surveys collected by two different contractors in the Eagle Ford will be discussed.

Jack Wiener, Senior Technical Advisor for Halliburton in Denver will present “Using 3D Seismic Data to Make Sound Decisions Drilling Horizontal Wells in the Niobrara Formation.” This talk will use a Niobrara case study to demonstrate how 3-D seismic-oriented workflows increase the performance in a high percentage of horizontal wellbores. Three areas of study will be discussed: using 3-D to more effectively pre-plan horizontal drilling, the use of a unique RBF neural network approach for a more useful and revealing integration of seismic and well data, and using geostatistical methods to help interpret the integrated dataset for reservoir analysis.

Marita Gading will discuss Statoil Norway’s findings on “Rock Physics and Seismic Data Used in Characterization of Source Rock Reservoirs.” The author will illustrate how increased resolution from 3D seismic data inversion can identify predefined rock physics properties and lithology classifications useful in the Marcellus Trend of Pennsylvania.

Greg Johnson is a Senior Geophysicist with WesternGeco in Denver. His presentation on “Advanced Imaging and Inversion for Oil Production Estimates in Unconventional Resource Plays,” will present a case study from the Bakken Shale in North Dakota. Here, advanced imaging and inversion techniques, including neural networks, unlock the true predictive power of 3-D seismic methodology for optimal development of unconventional resources. For a fraction of the total drilling and development cost, 3-D seismic data can aid in predrill planning, reducing drilling risk, maximizing ultimate recovery and dramatically impacting a project’s economic success.

Wave Imaging Technology’s Morgan Brown, in cooperation with Dave List and Chris Lang from Fidelity E&P Co., will present “PSDM for Unconventional Reservoirs? A Niobrara Shale Case Study.” Pre-stack depth migration (PSDM) adapted to unconventional resource plays will be shown to provide two major benefits: more accurate geologic dips between well control, and crisper better positioned views of faulting. Results will be highlighted in a case study from a high-resolution, wide-azimuth, 50 sq. mi. survey acquired in the Niobrara Shale of Southeast Wyoming. Here, proper interpretation of the 3-D dataset produced a new-well vertical mis-tie correction to the top Niobrara of just 4 feet. Review of these data shows more than enough variation in the Thomsen delta to justify Anisotropic PSDM processing.

Murray Roth, President of Transform Software Services, in conjunction with Ted Royer from Global Geophysical, will discuss “Seismic Data – Key to Solving the Eagle Ford ‘Puzzle.’” With over 250 active rigs and 3500 producing wells, the South Texas Eagle Ford has emerged as one of the top US unconventional plays. Though current production exceeds 1 million barrels per day (70% liquid), individual well performance is highly variable. To help understand this variance, the authors have created a database of all producing Eagle Ford wells, and using predictive analytic techniques, correlate geologic and drilling/completion data with individual well performance to highlight production trends and optimal engineering parameters.

Schlumberger’s Paul Miller will introduce “Application of Seismically Derived Fracture Mapping for Unconventional Reservoir Exploitation.” The paper will focus on using Ant-Tracking fault delineation to provide a powerful means of rapidly obtaining detailed, unbiased fault and fracture interpretation from seismic amplitude data. Integration with fracture information derived from well logs and microseismic data is shown to provide a detailed understanding of the geometries associated with fault/fracture networks. It is particularly powerful in terms of capturing small scale, often subtle discontinuities which normal interpretation would not traditionally capture. Example areas will include
the Piceance/Colorado, Bakken/North Dakota, and Fayetteville/Arkansas.

Wrapping up the list of authors will be Nate Fisher of Enerplus Resources, USA. He will present “A Tale of Two Surveys: Marcellus Development With and Without 3-D Seismic.” To create the preferred Marcellus Shale development plan, Enerplus requires the integration of surface data, core analysis, log-based rock properties, and the structural interpretation of 3-D seismic data. Unfortunately, drilling commitments required to hold leases often force it to employ a no-huddle, hurry-up approach. Nate will share an experience that resulted in a challenging appraisal well initially drilled on 2-D seismic, then later side-tracked with the help of 3-D seismic. The results of that well and the following well, also planned with the 3-D data will be highlighted. Lessons learned should help those involved with well development in structurally complex plays.

Registration is now open through either RMAG or DGS, or via the 3-D Symposium website (www.3dseismicsymposium.com). Sign up now and take advantage of the early registration discount. If you are interested in providing corporate sponsorship for this event, please contact Jim Folcik at Jim_Folcik@eogresources.com for more information.