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Abstract: Facies Dimensions Within Carbonate Reservoirs - Guidelines from Satellite Images of Modern Analogs

Paul M. Harris, William S. Kowalik

Modern analogs illustrate the distribution of carbonate facies within an overall depositional setting and can be an integral part of a subsurface geologic model in indicating the dimensions, trend, and interrelationships of facies that might be related to reservoir and non-reservoir distribution. Satellite images from several modern carbonate areas depict the geologic characteristics that can be expected in ancient shallow-water settings.

-- Isolated carbonate platforms- the Bahamas, Caicos Platform in the British West Indies, Chinchorro Bank offshore of Yucatan, and portions of the Belize area.

-- Ramp-style shelf-to-basin transitions - Abu Dhabi and northern Yucatan.

-- Rimmed shelf margins - South Florida, portions of Belize, and the Great Barrier Reef of Australia.

-- Broad, deep shelf lagoons - the Great Barrier Reef and Belize.

-- Reef variability - South Florida, the Bahamas, Caicos, Belize, the Great Barrier Reef, and Chinchorro Bank.

-- Carbonate sand bodies - the Bahamas, Caicos, northern Yucatan, and Abu Dhabi.

-- Shallow lagoon/tidal flat settings - South Florida, the Bahamas, Caicos, northern Yucatan. Shark Bay in Western Australia, Abu Dhabi.

-- Mixed carbonate and siliciclastic deposition - South Florida, Belize, the Great Barrier Reef, Shark Bay and Abu Dhabi.

The geologic framework as illustrated by these areas is important at the development scale where lateral variation of porosity and permeability, i.e. reservoir quality, is commonly tied to facies changes and facies dimensions are required as input to reservoir models. The geologic framework is essential at the exploration scale for reservoir facies prediction and stratigraphic play concepts which are related directly to depositional facies patterns.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90956©1995 AAPG International Convention and Exposition Meeting, Nice, France