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Development of Expert System for Classifying Sedimentary Basins as Aid to Assessing Petroleum Resources

Betty M. Miller

A prototype, operational expert system, called muPETROL, patterned after muPROSPECTOR, is designed to provide for a global classification of the sedimentary basins of the world as a first step in developing an integrated expert systems approach to estimating undiscovered petroleum resources. The first phase consists of nine sedimentary basin models based on the recognition criteria of H. D. Klemme's world-basin classification scheme. Each model, consisting of a rule-based system, embodies the geologic concepts of plate tectonics modified by regional tectonics and localized lithologic and depositional sequences.

The system of rule-based models is used to evaluate the likelihood of one or more occurrences based on the geologic characteristics deemed necessary for categorizing each basin, coupled with the geologic reasons upon which the evaluation is based. The test basin being classified is matched against known analog basins that are contained within a data base listing more than 600 world basins classified by the Klemme system.

This paper focuses on (1) acquiring the geologic knowledge base (knowledge acquisition) directly from experts, published references, and data bases essential for classifying the sedimentary basins of the world, and (2) building the basin models for an expert system whose ultimate purpose is to serve as the first phase in an integrated program to assess the undiscovered petroleum resources remaining in the world's basins.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91043©1986 AAPG Annual Convention, Atlanta, Georgia, June 15-18, 1986.