Oil and Gas

Oil and Gas | Reservoir Engineering

Strategic Reservoir Simulation

Course Code: N961
Instructors:  Karl Stephen
Course Outline:  Download
Format and Duration
5 days


This course provides an overview of the role of reservoir simulation, giving guidance on the construction, validation and use of simulation models. Rather than focussing on keywords and data structures specific to a single simulator, the course emphasises the modelling workflow with tips and techniques to ensure that models are fit-for-purpose, and that modelling limitations are understood. Additionally, the course introduces the rapidly evolving technology of experimental design, automatic history matching, proxy modelling and handling uncertainty in reservoir simulations.


The instructor is excellent with a strong knowledge in simulation engineering (reservoir).

Duration and Training Method

This is a five-day classroom course consisting of worked examples, exercises and discussion.  

Course Overview

Participants will learn to:

  1. Evaluate the role of numerical reservoir simulation in the context of reservoir economical development.
  2. Predict the physical processes modelled in a reservoir simulation, and the flow equations solved by the software.
  3. Assess the strengths and limitations of simulation models.
  4. Develop an effective modelling workflow, driven by the objectives of the simulation study.
  5. Plan a history matching strategy.
  6. Predict how simulation results are affected by data and modelling uncertainties.

The course aims to address a number of key topics in this area, but there is some flexibility in the formal itinerary depending on the groups preferences. The key topics that are covered include:

  • Introduction. Overview of reservoir analysis tools and techniques and their roles
  • Simulation model types (full-field models, sector models, cross-section models, single-well models, black oil and compositional simulation models, dual-porosity/dual-permeability models and a range of more specialized simulation alternatives)
  • Theory of simulation (fundamental flow equations and their solution)
  • Key processes: (Primary depletion, waterflood, immiscible gas injection etc)
  • Strengths and weaknesses of reservoir simulation
  • Simulation model objectives and the simulation model workflow
  • Simulation model choices (including: model scale, physical processes to include, grid selection and upgridding/upscaling, initialization)
  • Error checking / debugging
  • Post-processing
  • Numerical Issues (convergence problems, and improvements to run speed)
  • History matching
  • Tips for reviewing a simulation model
  • Well test prediction and analysis
  • Uncertainty modeling

This course is designed for mid to senior level engineers, in addition to production geologists or asset managers involved in integrated modeling projects.

Karl Stephen

Karl is Professorial Chair of EOR at the Universiti Tecknologi Petronas, Malaysia and also at the Institute of Petroleum Engineering (IPE), Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh. He holds a BSc (Hons) in Physics and a PhD in Theoretical and Computational Physics. Karl has been working at IPE for 20 years. In November 2016 he took up the position at UTP. His research interests include geological processes and their impact on flow via upscaling, history matching including the use of time-lapse seismic, optimization, flow in shale gas reservoirs, simulation of EOR and appropriate modelling of oil and gas reservoirs.

Since 2004 he has managed the Seismic History Matching Project, contributed to the Edinburgh Time Lapse Project and ran an industry sponsored project on upscaling and history matching. Karl has also worked on several consultancy projects including upscaling and EOR. During his career in research Karl has worked with data, models and simulations from a number of oil and gas fields including four turbidite, two shallow marine, one aeolian and one chalk field. Karl has over 80 publications, including 30 peer-reviewed papers.

Karl is leader of the Reservoir Simulation course that is taught as part of the MSc’s in Petroleum Engineering as well as Reservoir Evaluation and Management at IPE. Karl has also taught Reservoir Simulation at the ENI Corporate University, Milan. Karl will shortly teach Reservoir Simulation at UTP to Undergraduate and MSc level.

Karl is a referee for Tectonophysics, SPE Journal, SPE Reservoir Evaluation, Journal of Geophysics and Engineering, Oil and Gas Science and Technology – Review, Petroleum Geoscience, Transport in Porous Media, Marine and Petroleum Geology and Computational Geoscience and was a Distinguished Lecturer for the EAGE in 2010.

Affiliations and Accreditation
PhD Theoretical and Computational -  Physics
BSc Physics, Honors
SPE Journal - Referee
SPE Reservoir Evaluation and Engineering - Referee
Reservoir Geophysics and Engineering - Referee
EAGE Distinguished Lecturer (2010)

Courses Taught
N012: Reservoir Modelling Field Class
N961: Strategic Reservoir Simulation

CEU: 4.0 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.