Oil and Gas

Oil and Gas | Reservoir Development

Reservoir Modelling and the Application of Outcrop Analogues (Utah, USA)

Course Code: N576
Course Outline:  Download
Format and Duration:
5 days


In clastic reservoirs, the facies architecture is typically the most important control on the distribution of reservoir properties. Robust reservoir modelling depends upon the ability to visualise and capture the distribution of the architectural elements. This is based upon a conceptual model which is commonly derived from studies of outcrops and modern analogues. During this mixed classroom/field course we will explore a range of clastic depositional environments, understand the depositional processes and how it impacts the resultant architectural elements. We will consider the importance of stratigraphic reservoir zonation and explores different facies modelling strategies for different depositional environments. A key aspect will be understanding the sedimentological heterogeneities that impact flow and the different scales at which they occur. The course will use outcrop analogues from eastern Utah to describe workflows for better, facies-based reservoir modelling and illustrate why this matters with subsurface case studies. The course will visit classic outcrop sections, many of which have well logs and cores behind the cliffs allowing us to close the gap between outcrop and subsurface data. The concepts will be illustrated with reservoir models built from the outcrops. Virtual outcrops will also be available to enhance the understanding and integrate modern analogues.

Duration and Training Method

A five-day course with a mixture of field-based work and classroom teaching (60/40). Teaching will involve a series of short exercises to illustrate and emphasises key points.

Course Overview

 At the end of this course, participants will learn to:
  1. Apply the principals of reservoir model design including the importance of the “conceptual geological models” and the role of analogues.
  2. Given a set of petrophysical and facies data, determine which elements need to be captured in the static and dynamic models.
  3. Design a modelling grid based upon interpretation of the depositional environment and associated key heterogeneities.
  4. Create a stratigraphic based reservoir zonation scheme.
  5. Determine the appropriate facies modelling strategy (object modelling, pixel-based modelling, MPS).
  6. Given a fluvial reservoir, select the key model inputs and modelling methodology
  7. Given a shallow marine reservoir, recognize the role of depositional process in controlling reservoir architecture in shallow marine systems and how to model them.
  8. Given an aeolian system, determine how to zone and model the reservoir, with special reference to wet vs dry interdunes, dune trough geometries and other heterogeneities.

Day 0

  • Arrive Salt Lake City, then drive to Price, UT

Day 1

  • Introduction to shallow marine systems. Shorefaces vs Deltas. (Panther Tongue, Spring Canyon)
  • Night in Price, UT

Day 2. 

  • Fluvial systems – Non-marine Blackhawk and Price River Formation
  • Night in Price, UT

Day 3

  • Tidal Estuarine systems. (Woodside Canyon)
  • Night in Green River, UT

Day 4

  • Correlation and clinoforms in shoreface systems (Green River Embayment)
  • Night in Green River, UT

Day 5

  • Arid depositional systems – aeolian and fluvial deposits. Bartlett Wash and Hwy 7
  • Night in Moab, UT


Day 6

  • Drive to Salt Lake City for return flights

This course is multi-disciplinary. It is designed for geoscientists, petroleum engineers and petrophysicists involved in designing, building and assessing reservoir models.

CEU: 4 Continuing Education Units
PDH: 40 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.