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3-D seismic imaging and interpretation of Brushy Canyon slope and basin thin-bed reservoirs, northwest Delaware Basin

B. A. Hardage, J. L. Simmons, V. M. Pendleton, B. A. Stubbs and B. J. Uszynski
3-D seismic imaging and interpretation of Brushy Canyon slope and basin thin-bed reservoirs, northwest Delaware Basin
Geophysics (October 1998) 63 (5): 1507-1519


A study was done at Nash Draw field, Eddy County, New Mexico, to demonstrate how engineering, drilling, geologic, geophysical, and petrophysical technologies should be integrated to improve oil recovery from Brushy Canyon reservoirs at depths of approximately 6600 ft (2000 m) on the northwest slope of the Delaware basin. These thin-bed reservoirs were deposited in a slope-basin environment by a mechanism debated by researchers, a common model being turbidite deposition. In this paper, we describe how state-of-the-art 3-D seismic data were acquired, interpreted, integrated with other reservoir data, and then used to improve the siting of in-field wells and to provide facies parameters for reservoir simulation across this complex depositional system. The 3-D seismic field program was an onshore subsalt imaging effort because the Ochoan Rustler/Salado, a high-velocity salt/anhydrite section, extended from the surface to a depth of approximately 3000 ft (900 m) across the entire study area. The primary imaging targets were heterogeneous siltstone and fine-grained sandstone successions approximately 100 ft (30 m) thick and comprised of complex assemblages of thin lobe-like deposits having individual thicknesses of 3 to 6 ft (1 to 2 m). The seismic acquisition was complicated further by (1) the presence of active potash mines around and beneath the 3-D grid that were being worked at depths of 500 to 600 ft (150 to 180 m). (2) shallow salt lakes, and (3) numerous archeological sites. We show that by careful presurvey wave testing and attention to detail during data processing, thin-bed reservoirs in this portion of the Delaware basin can be imaged with a signal bandwidth of 10 to 100 Hz and that siltstone/sandstone successions 100 ft (30 m) thick in the basal Brushy Canyon interval can be individually detected and interpreted. Further, we show that amplitude attributes extracted from these 3-D data are valuable indicators of the amount of net pay and porosity-feet in the major reservoir successions and of the variations in the fluid transmissivity observed in production wells across the field. Relationships between seismic reflection amplitude and reservoir properties determined at the initial calibration wells have been used to site and drill two production wells. The first well found excellent reservoir conditions; the second well was slightly mispositioned relative to the targeted reflection-amplitude trend and penetrated reservoir facies typical of that at other producing wells. Relationships between seismic reflection amplitude and critical petrophysical properties of the thin-bed reservoirs have also allowed a seismic-driven simulation of reservoir performance to be initiated.

ISSN: 0016-8033
EISSN: 1942-2156
Coden: GPYSA7
Serial Title: Geophysics
Serial Volume: 63
Serial Issue: 5
Title: 3-D seismic imaging and interpretation of Brushy Canyon slope and basin thin-bed reservoirs, northwest Delaware Basin
Affiliation: University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology, Austin, TX, United States
Pages: 1507-1519
Published: 199810
Text Language: English
Publisher: Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Tulsa, OK, United States
References: 10
Accession Number: 1999-015900
Categories: Economic geology, economics of energy sourcesApplied geophysics
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. geol. sketch map, 2 tables, strat. col.
N32°00'00" - N32°57'00", W104°52'00" - W103°43'60"
Secondary Affiliation: Integrity Geophysics, Tulsa, OK, USA, United StatesPecos Petroleum Engineering, Roswell, NM, USA, United StatesTerritorial Resources, Roswell, NM, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 199906
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