About this Training Course

Trap and Seal analysis is an essential element of the evaluation of oil and gas prospects. Several comprehensive look-back studies have concluded that the absence of Trap and/or Seal are the main causes for exploration wells to be dry. Furthermore, in the large majority of prospect evaluations, the Trap Volume uncertainty is the main factor controlling the total uncertainty range of probabilistically calculated oil and gas volumes of exploration prospects.

Doing a good job in identifying valid potential subsurface traps requires creativity and resourcefulness, plus an excellent understanding of what may constitute a trap, what may cause a trap to leak and where potential spill- and leak-points may be. Otherwise, it is not possible to make meaningful predictions of the most likely column length and its uncertainty in undrilled exploration prospects, and therefore also not of the HC volumes that may be present. In mature basins and in basins with sub-optimal seismic data quality, where the more obvious traps have already been drilled, the search may be for alternative traps such as stratigraphic, deeper and/or basement traps.

Trap and seal analyses are discussed in this course from a pragmatic explorer’s point of view, based on the extensive experience of the instructor and on published case histories. Top seal and fault seal will both be addressed. The theoretical aspects of sealing that have been developed over the years will be explained, and case histories from different basin settings will be presented.

For subsurface CO2 storage, trap and seal analysis is equally important as it is not only essential to know how much pore space is available, but also what the risks are for leakage of CO2 and for induced fault reactivation and earthquakes. The geomechanical aspects of containment of CO2 will be presented via an online module by industry expert Guest Trainer.

Participants will be provided with the opportunity to use the Ariane software package (ArianeLogiX) to investigate the effect of different seal qualities of top and fault seal on trapped column lengths and the oil and gas mix. For the module on “Modelling of top and lateral seals”, participants are required to bring their laptops and will be assigned to work in pairs.

The main objective of this course is to provide practical advice and clear guidelines on trap and seal analysis that will help explorers in their day-to-day work.

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