Technology Focus: Seismic Applications (March 2012)
- Gerd Kleemeyer (Shell Global Solutions Upstream)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- March 2012
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 104 - 104
- 2012. Copyright is retained by the author. This document is distributed by SPE with the permission of the author. Contact the author for permission to use material from this document.
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Following an increased investment in advanced seismic solutions, we have experienced some remarkable boundary shifts in seismic-data quality in recent years. Significant improvements have been achieved in densely sampled wide-azimuth seismic acquisition and in wave-equation-based imaging techniques, such as full-wave-form inversion and reverse time-migration, in processing. Also, emerging marine broadband-seismic solutions promise a real step change in resolution, offering unprecedented detail in subsurface interpretation and enhanced penetration of low frequencies for deep imaging.
Massive changes are also happening in the amount of data being acquired, leading to new challenges in processing and interpretation. The channel count for onshore-acquisition systems continues to increase, and new records have been set in the towing capacity of marine-seismic vessels. These continuing developments enable efficient acquisition of larger and denser surveys with longer offsets and rich azimuth data. However, these developments generally are also associated with an increased footprint that must be managed both operationally and environmentally.
It is, therefore, evident that not all new techniques can be ported easily to all environments. Adequate solutions must be chosen from the growing geophysical toolbox, balancing technical aspects with operational constraints and business requirements. Large-scale regional exploration surveys in environmentally sensitive or remote areas can differ significantly from detailed surveys required for infill-drilling targets. Flexible and scalable survey techniques are particularly important to enable smart data acquisition in areas where access had been notoriously difficult because of environmental, operational, or economic restrictions.
This seismic feature provides examples for ongoing boundary shifts in seismic technologies complemented by a guide for the interpretation of microseismic data and a pilot study about pushing time-lapse seismic monitoring toward carbonate reservoirs. A common element of the documented successes is continued commitment to and investment in technology and a close integration with business.
Recommended additional reading at OnePetro: www.onepetro.org.
SPE 146144 High-Density OBC—A Step Change in Reservoir Imaging: A BP North Sea View by Daniel Davies, BP plc, et al.
OTC 21937 Application of Geophysical Technologies and the Impact on Shell’s GOM Field Development by Jan Douma, Shell E&P, et al.
SPE 142211 Recent Advances in Pore-Pressure Prediction in Complex Geologic Environments by Alan R. Huffman, Fusion Petroleum Technologies, et al.
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