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Solving Subsurface Structural Problems Using a Computer

Duncan M. Witte

Until recently, the solution of subsurface structural problems has required a combination of graphical construction, trigonometry, time, and patience. Recent advances in software available for both mainframe and microcomputers now reduce the time and potential error of these calculations by an order of magnitude.

Software for analysis of deviated wells, three point problems, apparent dip, apparent thickness, and the intersection of two planes, as well as the plotting and interpretation of these data can be used to allow timely and accurate exploration or operational decisions.

The available computer software provides a set of utilities, or tools, rather than a comprehensive, intelligent system. The burden for selection of appropriate techniques, computation methods, and interpretations still lies with the explorationist user.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91037©1987 AAPG Southwest Section, Dallas, Texas, March 22-24, 1987.