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Carbonate Systems and Reservoir Characterization and Unconventional Reservoirs

Carbonate depositional environments are inherently heterogeneous because of the superposition of sedimentary and diagenetic processes during successions of relative sea level changes. Projects in the modern environment use a combination of various types of remote sensing data and surface samples to capture the spatial trend metrics of sedimentary bodies. Surface samples from northwestern Great Bahama Bank are intended to refine the facies maps of this classic modern platform system.
Understanding flow, compartmentalization and mineralization in reservoirs depends on knowledge of the 3-D architecture of sedimentary structure and fracture network in the rock volume around the borehole. Several of our projects aim to increase our understanding of the lateral and vertical heterogeneity of facies and fractures. To achieve this goal, we have developed a new generation of 3-D Ground Penetrating Radar to retrieve the sub-meter scale variability of facies and flow units from Pleistocene grainstone shoals in the Miami Oolite and for fractures in several locations around the world. Seismic data from various regions are used to examine the evolution of carbonate systems in different tectonic settings and assess the influence of tectonic activity, sea level changes and sediment supply on the carbonate depositional system. Currently, we study seismic data from the Bahamas-Cuba foreland basin to decipher carbonate platform drowning as a result of increased subsidence during the formation of this foreland basin, and to delineate the evolution of the Gulf Stream from sediment drifts in the Bahamas region.
Reservoir heterogeneities and the large-scale distribution of reservoir quality dolomite have been the focus of projects in the Mississippian Madison Formation. Currently we are assessing the dolomitization processes in the Madison Formation and the correlation of the dynamics of the evolving foreland basin on the evolution of these ramp carbonates. In addition, we continue our research in relating mechanical stratigraphy to sequence stratigraphy. These projects will provide us with a methodology to predict to a certain degree the fractures from facies and stratigraphic information.

Current Projects



Hydrodynamic Model for Isolated Carbonate Platforms

PurkisS_CSL2017_GBB_prosp

Project Media
     
PurkisS_C...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:344KB

 

Investigators: Sam J. Purkis, Georgenes Cavalcante, Liisa Rohtla, and Paul (Mitch) Harris

Project Objectives:

  • Combine the MIKE hydrodynamic model with facies maps for the Cay Sal Bank (CSB) and Great Bahama Bank (GBB) to examine the development of hiatal surfaces.
  • Derive accurate bathymetry for Little Bahama Bank (LBB) so that it may be included in the model domain.
  • Expand the analysis of MODIS imagery to audit whitings on the CSB and LBB to explore synchronicity with events on the GBB.
  • Run the MIKE model for the Pleistocene S. Florida shelf to explore hydrodynamic control on the Miami oolite.



     

Quantitative Interrogation of Depositional Patterns and Diagenetic Modification of the Miami Oolite

HarrisP_CSL2017_oolite_prosp

Project Media
     
HarrisP_C...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:942KB

 

Investigators: Paul (Mitch) Harris and Sam J. Purkis

Project Objectives:

  • Exposure of the Miami oolite in the vicinity of Miami, Florida, provides excellent examples for analysis of preserved primary sedimentary features and subsequent diagenetic changes of a “fossilized” ooid sand body.
  • Continued analysis of the depositional patterns and stratigraphy of the Miami oolite from interrogation of outcrops, cores and ground penetrating radar (GPR) within the framework of an airborne LiDAR digital terrain model (DTM).
  • Investigation of the varied styles of karst overprint of the outcrops and the amount of modification to the depositional profile.

 



     

Geomorphometry along Western Great Bahama Bank - Plunge Pools and Cyclic Steps

SchnyderJ_CSL2017_plunge_prosp

Project Media
     
SchnyderJ...pool.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:2MB

 

Investigators: Jara S.D. Schnyder, Gregor P. Eberli, Christian Betzler, Linda Schiebel, Sebastian Lindhorst, and Marco Wunsch

Project Objectives:

  • Analyze morphobathymetric dimensions and distribution of plunge pools as well as steepness and orientation of associated cyclic steps on the lower slope.
  • Assess influence of plunge pool and sediment ridge geometry on sediment distribution along the slope.
  • Perform integrated morphometric analysis (multibeam bathymetry, backscatter data, sediment samples) as proxies for regional currents and resultant sediment distribution.



     

Composition and Growth Patterns of Cold-water Coral Mounds in the Straits of Florida

GalvezK_CSL2017_CWC_prosp

Project Media
     
GalvezK_C...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:4MB

 

Investigators: Kimberly C. Galvez, Gregor P. Eberli, Jürgen Titschack, and Claudia Wienberg

Project Objectives:

  • Determine ages and growth rates in both the Matterhorn and Mount Gay cold-water coral mounds.
  • Ascertain if the pattern of pulses of coral growth relates to changes in seawater chemistry using isotopic signatures.
  • Assess the variability of species diversity in the two CWC mounds.

 



     

Habitat Map and Geomorphometry of East Campeche Bank: A Proxy for Current Directions

SchnyderJ_CSL2017_Campeche_prosp

Project Media
     
SchnyderJ...eche.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:2MB

 

Investigators: Jara S.D. Schnyder, Kimberly C. Galvez, Gregor P. Eberli, Dierk Hebbeln, Paul Wintersteller, and Claudia Wienberg

Project Objectives:

  • Geomorphometric analysis and topographic classification of the multibeam data of Campeche Bank.
  • Develop a hydrodynamic model in order to obtain a proxy for local/regional currents and relate to coral-habitat distribution.



     

South China Sea Oceanographic Impact on the Luconia Platforms Offshore Sarawak, Malaysia

BashahS_CSL2017_Malaysia_prosp

Project Media
     
BashahS_C...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:1MB

 

Investigators: Sara Bashah and Gregor P. Eberli

Project Objectives:

  • To investigate whether the demise of the carbonate platforms in the Luconia province was influenced by the strengthening of the East Asian monsoon.
  • To assess the relative importance of oceanographic factors, compared to sea level and tectonics, influencing the geometry and facies distribution of the platforms in the Luconia province.



     

Deciphering the Evolution of the New Providence Platform, Bahamas, Using 2D GPR Data and Core Correlation

AlothmanE_CSL2017_Bahamas_prosp

Project Media
     
AlothmanE...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:1MB

 

Investigators: Emad H. Alothman, Mark Grasmueck, and Gregor P. Eberli

Project Objectives: 

  • Conduct a high-resolution sequence stratigraphic analysis of the Pleistocene carbonate deposits of New Providence Island on 250 MHz 2D GPR data.
  • Integrate GPR data with outcrop facies analysis and high resolution drone photography.
  • Reconstruct the depositional history of the Tertiary deposits of New Providence Platform using a 670 ft core.

 



     

Calcite Concretions to Refine the Marine-to-Nonmarine (Sequence) Boundary

McNeillD_CSL2017_concrection_prosp

Project Media
     
McNeillD_...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:1MB

 

Investigators: Donald F. McNeill, James S. Klaus, and Peter K. Swart

Project Objectives: 

  • To use calcite concretions, a product of cementation by marine seawater, to better constrain the position of the marine-to-nonmarine deposition in a tropic mixed system.

 



     

Deconstructing the Sedimentology of Mixed Carbonate-Siliciclastic Deposition: Cibao Basin, Dominican Republic

BurkeB_CSL2017_DR_prosp

Project Media
     
BurkeB_CS...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:224KB

 

Investigators: Brandon Burke, James S. Klaus, Donald F. McNeill, and Peter K. Swart

Project Objectives: 

  • Provide a textural, geochemical, and paleo-ecological calibration of an outcrop section through an unconformity-bounded mixed system sequence.
  • Develop a depositional model for tropical mixed skeletal (reef) and mudsourced deposition that includes the timing of siliciclastic inputs and variability in carbonate production.
  • Assess the magnitude of the late Miocene Zanclean transgression and compare the mixed systems response to other global signatures from this event.

 



     

Petrophysical Properties of a Fringing Reef Margin

CascoP_CSL2017_DRreef_prosp

Project Media
     
CascoP_CS...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:2MB

 

Investigators: Pierre Casco, Viviana Diaz, James S. Klaus, Donald F. McNeill, Albertus Ditya, Ralf J. Weger, and Gregor P. Eberli

Project Objectives: 

  • Determine the petrophysical properties (electrical resistivity, ultrasonic velocity, porosity, permeability, and density) within a seven borehole transect across the Pleistocene reefal carbonates of the southern Dominican Republic.
  • Assess the relative influence of primary depositional facies and subsequent diagenetic alteration on the measured mechanical and petrophysical properties.
  • Develop a gridded model from core measurement and stratigraphic data that can be used to assess optimal seismic acquisition parameters and limits of imaging resolution within the reefal margin.

 



     

Assemble Comprehensive Database of Mechanical and Petrophysical Properties of Platform Carbonates

SchnyderJ_CSL2017_database_prosp

Project Media
     
SchnyderJ...base.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:3MB

 

Investigators: Jara S.D. Schnyder, Gregor P. Eberli, Donald F. McNeill, and Ralf J. Weger

Project Objectives: 

  • Assemble mechanical properties (velocity, density, elastic moduli) and petrophysical properties (porosity, permeability, resistivity) of carbonate platforms and their adjacent basinal sediments.
  • Organize data set according to age, setting, environment, texture, dominant pore type, and mineralogy for the evaluation of interconnected relationships.

 



     

The Vaca Muerta Research Initiative (Year 3): Neuquén Basin, Argentina

Eberli_CSL2017_VM_prosp

Project Media
     
EberliG_C...erta.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:19MB

 

Investigators: Vaca Muerta Team of the CSL – Center for Carbonate Research

Project Objectives: 

  • Produce outcrop analogs for the Vaca Muerta Formation in the Neuquén Basin in the proximal to the distal portion of the basin.
  • Use lithological, geochemical, and petrophysical properties of the Vaca Muerta Formation to advance knowledge of the accumulation, preservation and distribution of organic-rich mudstones.
  • Conduct individual projects for a comprehensive assessment of the sedimentologic, geochemical, and stratigraphic processes in this and other unconventional plays.

 



     

Lateral Facies Variability and Thickness Changes in a Basinal Setting

WegerR_CSL2017_facies_prosp

Project Media
     
WegerR_CS...cies.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:1MB

 

Investigators: Ralf J. Weger and the Vaca Muerta Team

Project Objectives:

  • Measure a new section of the Vaca Muerta Formation approximately 5 km north of the existing Puerta Curaco reference section to assess the lateral variability in the basin center.
  • Refine the Puerta Curaco (PC) reference section measurements and fillin missing parts.
  • Measure a new section in Yesera del Tromen to achieve a better tie to existing published age data.



     

Depositional and Environmental Controls on Organic Material in the Vaca Muerta Formation

TegnaliaM_CSL2017_VM_prosp

Project Media
     
TenagliaM...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:183KB

 

Investigators: Max Tenaglia, and the Vaca Muerta Team

Project Objectives:

  • Produce a comprehensive depositional model identifying the position of organic rich source rocks within the prograding clinoforms in the Neuquén Basin.
  • Identify environmental factors conducive to the development of high Total Organic Carbon (TOC) intervals.

 



     

High Resolution Elemental, Mineral and Isotopic Assessment of Cycles of the Vaca Muerta Formation, Argentina

RuedaL_CSL2017_VM_prosp

Project Media
     
RuedaL_CS...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:3MB

 

Investigators: Laura Rueda, Gregor Eberli, and the Vaca Muerta Team

Project Objectives:

  • Conduct an elemental, mineralogical, and isotopic calibration of the depositional cycles of the Vaca Muerta Formation.
  • Correlate elemental logs from short cores using X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) to the mineralogy retrieved from X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Near- Infrared Spectroscopy (NIR), and Hyperspectral Core Imaging (HCI).
  • Compare the mineralogy in outcrops from XRD, thin sections, NIR and HCI measurements.

 



     

Temperature of Formation of the Vaca Muerta “Beef” Determined by Clumped Isotopes

WegerR_CSL2017_beef_prosp

Project Media
     
WegerR_CS...beef.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:233KB

 

Investigators: Ralf J. Weger, Donald F. McNeill, Sean Murray, Peter K. Swart, Gregor P. Eberli, and the Vaca Muerta Team

Project Objectives:

  • Determine the temperature and the lateral variation in temperature and fluid composition of the beef calcite using stable δ13C and δ18O values and the clumped isotope paleo-thermometer.

 



     

Acoustic and Electrical Property Characterization of the Vaca Muerta Formation

Tenaglia_prosp2015_pic

Project Media
     
YuksekM_C...ctus.pdf
Media Type:Media Type
File Size:61KB

 

Investigators: Mustafa K. Yüksek Ralf J. Weger, Gregor P. Eberli, and the Vaca Muerta Team

Project Objectives:

  • Produce a comprehensive petrophysical data set (porosity, acoustic velocity, resistivity, permeability and pore structure) of the facies in the Vaca Muerta Formation.
  • Define the control of mineralogy and clay content on the petrophysical properties and, in particular, the acoustic anisotropy.
  • Examine the relationship between clay content, acoustic velocity and resistivity to find differences between ductile and brittle behavior of the mudstones of the Vaca Muerta Formation.



     
 

 

 

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