Understanding the Deep Water Deposits of the Wilcox Formation in the Walker Ridge, Gulf of Mexico
Chantale McIntosh1, Stephen Johnson2, and Sverre Henriksen1
1Trondheim Research Centre, StatoilHydro, Trondheim, Norway
2StatoilHydro, Houston, TX
The deep water Paleogene play in the Walker Ridge, Gulf of Mexico, was discovered in 2002 with the drilling of the Cascade well, which established the presence of Wilcox Formation turbidite sandstones. The estimated ultimate recovery for the Paleogene play is between 3 and 15 bboe. The play was tested in the Jack 2 well in 2006 which yielded 6000 boepd from 40% of the net pay in Jack 2 suggesting the potential for economic flow rates for production from the Early Tertiary trend.
Reservoir characterisation in the Walker Ridge is hampered by subsalt seismic imaging issues and poor biostratigraphy. Due to these limitations, process based sedimentology from cores is used as a foundation for understanding the reservoir and the Wilcox depositional system. Early interpretations of the depositional system in this region suggested laterally extensive sheet-like sandbodies. More recent detailed interpretations of core data have however revealed a more complex depositional system, including both sheet-like sandbodies and channels, which will have implications for sandbody connectivity. The results of this detailed sedimentological study on several wells in the Walker Ridge will be presented, and criteria for identifying depositional setting from core will be outlined. The implications of the core interpretations will be discussed and linked to provenance and paleogeography to advance improved sub-regional depositional models. In the Walker Ridge area the new models have implications for both the field scale development and the regional scale exploration efforts.
AAPG International Conference and Exhibition, Cape Town, South Africa 2008 © AAPG Search and Discovery