Integrating Digital Outcrop Geology with Traditional Field Geology Methods: Examples from the U.S.A., Egypt, Morocco and the United Kingdom
David Hodgetts1, Rob Gawthorpe1, Jonathan Redfern1, Franklin Rarity1,
Kevin G. Taylor2, Paul Wilson1, and Ivan Fabuel Perez1
1 University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom
2 Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, United Kingdom
The application of quantitative geological mapping and surveying techniques (LIDAR and DGPS) to outcrops from Egypt, USA, Morocco and the UK have allowed the building of 3D geological models of these outcrops using proprietary reservoir modelling software. By maintaining data in an integrated 3D georeferenced framework from data collection through to the final model building phase an improved understanding of structural and stratigraphic architecture is obtained. Geostatistical information on geological object sizes shapes and orientations (for object based reservoir modelling) as well as information on facies proportions and distributions in both horizontal and vertical sense are also derived from the LIDAR data. There are, however, many important measurements which cannot be derived easily from LIDAR data (e.g. grainsize and facies). These are best collected using traditional field geology techniques such as outcrop logging. During the outcrop logging phase particular attention is placed on identification of geo-objects (e.g. fluvial channels, tidal channels, turbidite lobes etc.) and analysis of their geomorphology. These observations enable the relationship between observed reservoir facies and geo-objects to be described, as well as the relationship of both of these to structure. The resulting data from DGPS mapping, LIDAR and photogrammetry, when combined with traditional mapping and outcrop logging techniques (by utilizing in-house software for handling outcrop logs etc) provide a highly quantitative dataset, which is used to build ‘close to deterministic' models of the outcrop data.