A. K. Kuhme
Three reef settings in northern Alberta and British Columbia were examined: (1) shelf edge, in the Clarke Lake shale basin; (2) open-marine pinnacle, in the Clarke Lake shale basin; and (3) restricted basin pinnacle, in the Shekilie evaporite basin. The shelf-edge reef tends to be water prone and does not offer the same reserves potential as pinnacle reefs; therefore, it is not examined in detail. The pinnacle reefs in the open-marine setting tend to be gas prone, whereas the pinnacle reefs in the restricted basin setting tend to be oil prone.
Seismic models were generated from geologic cross sections over existing, economically producing reef anomalies. Seismic responses from these models were then examined, and criteria for reef identification established. For the acid test, seismic anomalies that were tested by the drill bit were examined, and the validity of the reef identification criteria was confirmed. Examples include both economic successes and failures.
A different set of criteria for pinnacle reef identification were established for open-marine and restricted basin settings. Criteria are not universally applicable, so each basin will have a different set. Detecting the content and amount of porosity in reefs using seismic studies is elusive at best and remains a challenge to the explorationist.
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91043©1986 AAPG Annual Convention, Atlanta, Georgia, June 15-18, 1986.