Oil and Gas

Oil and Gas | Reservoir Development

Advanced Techniques for Modelling Fluvial and Deltaic Architecture using Petrel (Utah, USA)

Course Code: N215
Course Outline:  Download
Format and Duration
6 days


This geocellular modelling course, focuses on teaching participants novel and practical methods to build realistic models of fluvial and deltaic sediment body architecture, demonstrated using Petrel software. The techniques can easily be adapted to other surface-based 3D static modelling packages.  


An excellent training course! A "must" for all reservoir geologists/geomodellers!

Duration and Training Method

A six-day field and classroom-based reservoir geology and modelling course in Grand Junction, Colorado and Green River, Utah. The proportion of field, classroom and software modelling time is approximately 60/10/30.  The course blends outcrop instruction with corresponding instruction in building 3D Petrel models of the same outcrops. Generally, the mornings are spent in the field with afternoon classroom core and modelling sessions.

Course Overview

Participants will learn to:

  1. Evaluate offshore, shoreface, fluvial/tidal channel and coastal plain facies from outcrop, core, log signatures and reservoir properties.
  2. Characterise sequence stratigraphic surfaces from outcrop, core and log signatures.
  3. Construct a sequence stratigraphic framework for the reservoir modelling of fluvial and deltaic depositional environments.
  4. Appraise sedimentary stacking patterns from core and log data and predict fluvio-deltaic architecture in areas of the model with little or no well data.
  5. Construct realistic conceptual models which the final 3D models can be checked against.
  6. Perform novel correlation techniques to define connectivity in the static model.
  7. Assemble 3D Petrel models after analysing large-scale outcrops.
  8. Formulate a strong overall knowledge and perspective of different static reservoir modelling strategies, workflows and techniques.
  9. Integrate core, log and any other available data to build deterministic reservoir models which distribute reservoir properties realistically in 3D and establish flow and non-flow units within it.
  10. Propose the advantages of novel deterministic modelling techniques, unique to this course, which are used to create realistic sedimentary architecture.
  11. Perform deterministic modelling using Petrel and compare modelling results with, and understand the shortcomings of standard Petrel modelling techniques.

Outcrops, cores and well logs are used by the participants to build a series of Petrel models using a range of different modelling techniques. The results are then compared to outcrop reality in order to ascertain which techniques are the most suitable for analogous subsurface reservoir modelling studies.

The course follows the typical workflow of a subsurface 3D modeling study and is aimed at making a series of realistic, predictive models of sedimentary geometries and architecture using detailed knowledge of sedimentolgy and sequence stratigraphic concepts.

Although the class is based around comparison between fluvio-deltaic outcrop examples and corresponding 3D models, many of the techniques can be easily adapted to other depositional environments.

The primary topics covered in the course are:

  1. Overview of different modelling techniques and modelling strategies
  2. Diagnostic outcrop, core and log interpretation of fluviodeltaic environments and facies
  3. Integration of core, log and reservoir properties to define flow and non-flow units
  4. Building a sequence stratigraphic framework for reservoir modelling
  5. Correlation techniques using well data
  6. Deterministic modelling techniques using Petrel
  7. Using Petrel hierarchy, zone logs and layering
  8. Comparison of modeling results from different Petrel techniques

Itinerary and Teaching Objectives:

Day 0:  

  • Evening introduction in Grand Junction, Colorado

Day 1:  

  • Lectures: Geological content and setting; Petrel data sets
  • Field: Colorado National Monument – large-scale stratigraphic overview
  • Field: Beckwith Plateau – seismic scale overview
  • Overnight in Green River, Utah

Day 2:  

  • Lecture: Cretaceous depositional environments and facies
  • Field: WoodsideTrail Canyon – Kenilworth Member exercise
  • Lectures: Petrel modeling methodologies; Correlation; Flooding Surface Exercise:   Kenilworth Petrel model
  • Overnight in Green River, Utah

Day 3:  

  • Exercise: - Kenilworth Petrel model (cont.)
  • Syndicate presentations of Kenilworth Petrel exercise
  • Lecture: Kenilworth model discussion
  • Field: Tusher Canyon overview – Kenilworth Member
  • Field: Bluecastle Butte – Kenilworth Member
  • Field: Battleship Butte – Kenilworth Member
  • Lectures: Petrel hierarchy, zone logs and layering
  • Overnight in Green River, Utah 

Day 4:  

  • Lecture: Cores, Logs and Reservoir Properties
  • Exercise: Desert/Castlegate core-log calibration
  • Field: Tusher Canyon - Castlegate Sandstone and Desert Member exercise
  • Syndicate presentations of Tusher Canyon exercise
  • Overnight in Green River 

Day 5:  

  • Field: Blaze Canyon west – Desert/Castlegate
  • Field: Blaze Canyon – Desert/Castlegate
  • Field: Thompson Canyon – Desert/Castlegate
  • Field: Sagers Canyon – Desert/Castlegate
  • Exercise: Desert/Castlegate Petrel model (cont.)
  • Overnight in Green River

Day 6:  

  • Syndicate review of Desert/Castlegate Petrel exercise
  • Lecture: Discussion of Desert/Castlegate Petrel exercise
  • Field: Pinchout of Castlegate shorefaces
  • Lecture: Trip review, wrap-up and evaluation
  • Overnight in Grand Junction

This class is for experienced geoscientists who are interested in accurately and realistically modeling sedimentary architecture. Although the class is based around fluvial and deltaic outcrop examples, many of the techniques can be easily adapted to other depositional environment types.

CEU: 4.8 Continuing Education Units
PDH: 48 Professional Development Hours
Certificate: Certificate Issued Upon Completion
RPS is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and is authorized to issue the IACET CEU. We comply with the ANSI/IACET Standard, which is recognised internationally as a standard of excellence in instructional practices.
We issue a Certificate of Attendance which verifies the number of training hours attended. Our courses are generally accepted by most professional licensing boards/associations towards continuing education credits. Please check with your licensing board to determine if the courses and certificate of attendance meet their specific criteria.