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Villeperdue Field: Exploration of a Subtle Trap in the Paris Basin

Bernard C. Duval
Bernard C. Duval
TOTAL Compagnie Francaise des Pétroles Paris, France
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January 01, 1992


The Villeperdue oil field is located in the Paris basin less than 100 km east of Paris. The first well was drilled in 1959 and tested some oil, but it was not until 1982 that exploration was resumed and the field proved commercial.

The trap is not obvious from seismic data because of velocity variations in the Tertiary and in the Cretaceous chalk. It is a combination of stratigraphic, structural, and diagenetic features. The structure is a western-plunging nose, the eastward updip closure being controlled mainly by variation of permeability and possibly influenced by gentle faults and pressure barriers. The Villeperdue field has a producing surface area of about 65 km2 and a 60-m oil column.

The reservoir is an oolitic limestone of Middle Jurassic (lower Callovian) age. Its average thickness is about 30 m and its approximate depth is 1850 m (1650 m subsea). Two main units, linked to specific oolitic microfacies, can be identified. Detection of porosity over the field, and consequently delineation, are therefore dependent on detailed facies and sedimentological studies.

The generation of oil from Liassic source rocks started during the Cretaceous, and the migration upward into the lower Callovian carbonate was made possible by Tertiary faulting.

The current production of 12,000 BOPD comes from 100 wells and is enhanced by water injection. Horizontal drilling has given positive results and will be used more in future programs.

The play concept has been successfully applied on a regional basis and has resulted in several other discoveries, although minor in size.

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AAPG Memoir

Giant Oil and Gas Fields of the Decade 1978-1988

Michel T. Halbouty
Michel T. Halbouty
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
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Publication date:
January 01, 1992




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