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Abstract

The impact of geometric uncertainty on across-fault flow behaviour at the scale of individual intra-reservoir faults is investigated in this study. A high resolution digital elevation model (DEM) of a faulted outcrop is used to construct an outcrop-scale geocellular grid capturing high-resolution fault geometries (5 m scale). Seismic forward modelling of this grid allows generation of a 3D synthetic seismic cube, which reveals the corresponding seismically resolvable fault geometries (12.5 m scale). Construction of a second geocellular model, based upon the seismically resolvable fault geometries, allows comparison with the original outcrop geometries. Running fluid flow simulations across both models enables us to assess quantitatively the impact of outcrop resolution v. seismic resolution fault geometries upon across-fault flow. The results suggest that seismically resolvable fault geometries significantly underestimate the area of across-fault juxtaposition relative to realistic fault geometries. In turn this leads to overestimates in the sealing ability of faults, and inaccurate calculation of fault plane properties such as transmissibility multipliers (TMs).

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