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Blakeney DeJarnett, Beverly1, Laura C. Zahm1
(1) The University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology, The Houston Research Center, Houston, TX

ABSTRACT: Cores and Cuttings - An Extraordinary Resource

Rocks provide the closest thing to ground truth that geoscientists have, and taking advantage of this extraordinary resource by integrating cores and cuttings whenever possible can dramatically enhance our technical interpretations. First, cores give us the chance to plug reality into our models. This includes three-dimensional reservoir modeling, production modeling, geophysical modeling, and modeling for technologically advanced logging tools. Cores are also our only direct glimpse at the reservoirs beneath our feet, and they allow geoscientists to update and improve stratigraphic interpretations of these reservoirs.
This core display features spectacular examples of several siliciclastic depositional systems from the Bureau’s teaching collection. (See Zahm and DeJarnett poster for carbonates.) Cores include a valley-fill reservoir from Colorado, a deep-water sandstone, and a tidally affected, wave-dominated shoreface succession from the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway. Case studies accompany each core and illustrate how the acquisition and analysis of each core and the subsequent integration of core-derived data directly affected the exploration and/or exploitation of each particular reservoir.
The Houston Research Center is the Bureau’s newest core facility, and it houses more than 450,000 boxes of cores and cuttings. These rocks have been acquired by industry over many years and are now available to the public for the first time. Recognizing the importance of preserving and curating this invaluable resource, the Bureau maintains more than 1.7 million boxes of rock material in Austin, Midland, and Houston. An online database for all the Bureau facilities makes it easy to search for and locate cores of interest.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90026©2004 AAPG Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas, April 18-21, 2004.