David S. McCormick1, Peter S. Kaufman1
(1) Schlumberger-Doll Research, Ridgefield, CT
ABSTRACT: Outcrop Characterization with Digital Geologic Mapping
Throughout the typical exploration and production workflow, petroleum geologists apply their experience with outcrop analogs to gain a better understanding of the subsurface data they are currently interpreting. A fundamental problem of outcrop studies is how to capture the inherent three-dimensionality of sedimentary bodies, stratigraphic units, and structural features in a quantitative fashion. "Digital Geology" offers a new approach to the collection and visualization of quantitative geologic field data by incorporating modern surveying technologies and 3D visualization into the traditional outcrop characterization workflow. Although the specific techniques vary between datasets, the common theme of digital geology field campaigns is that the geologic data are collected in conjunction with highly accurate spatial information along with their specific geologic attributes. This spatial context allows the inherent three-dimensional nature of outcrop data to be used to gain a better understanding of the geometry and properties of key geological features and bodies and the geologic processes that allowed it to form. These digital surveying techniques allow geological data to be quantified. Spatial context also allows outcrop data sets to be placed in a 3D viewing canvas and directly compared to common exploration and production data such as cores, well logs, and seismic data. Examples of stratigraphic and structural outcrop analogs that we have been collected using digital geology will be shown as demonstrations in the techniques of data capture and visualization.
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90906©2001 AAPG Annual Convention, Denver, Colorado