--> Abstract: Integrated Earth Modeling: From Seismic Interpretation to Flow Simulation in Reservoirs, by Jean-Laurent Mallet; #90064 (2007).

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Integrated Earth Modeling: From Seismic Interpretation to Flow Simulation in Reservoirs


Jean-Laurent Mallet

Ecole nationale Supérieure de Géologie, Nancy, France



The modeling of fluid flow in oil and gas reservoirs is a critical element in the successful and cost effective development and production of oil and gas fields. This is a complex task which requires input from a broad range of technical disciplines and can be very time consuming. During the 90s, many people in the oil and gas industry advocated an integrated approach to geo-modeling which led to the concept of “Shared Earth Model” (SEM), which was more hope than reality. Unfortunately, due to the lack of a unified vision, most solutions (both software and methods) offered so far have focused on one particular step of the modeling process rather than on the entire process from interpretation to flow simulation and beyond. As a consequence, all these “Shared” Earth Models are not sharable and therefore must be downgraded to the status of “Earth Models” (EMs). For example, in the early 90s all the so-called SEMs were mainly focused on seismic tomography but are now focused on flow grid construction implying severe (and dangerous) approximations of the real structures and properties of the studied geological domains.


The first part of this talk reviews some of these (non sharable) Earth Models (EM), stressing their respective weaknesses and showing why they cannot reasonably be considered as “Sharable” between the different disciplines involved in the modeling process from seismic interpretation to flow simulation.


The second part of this talk focuses on the concepts of “Fine Geostatistical Grid” (FGG) and “Rough Flow Grid” (RFG) and the needs for upscaling FGG’s into RFG’s. An analysis of the real needs of geostatisticians and reservoir engineers leads to the conclusion that the two grids are irreconcilable… at least using current technologies based on regular structured grids whose cells all are hexahedral.


The final part of this talk aims to provide a clear definition of an “actually sharable” Shared Earth Model and then offers a new paradigm reconciling the demands of seismic interpreters, structural geologists, geostatisticians and reservoir engineers. This has the potential to streamline integrated earth modeling and reduce the cycle time for the modeling of fluid flow in oil and gas reservoirs.



AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90064©2006-2007 AAPG Distinguished Lecturers