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Geophysical helicopter-based magnetic methods for locating wells

Vladislav Kaminski, Richard W. Hammack, William Harbert, Garret A. Veloski, James Sams and D. Greg Hodges
Geophysical helicopter-based magnetic methods for locating wells
Geophysics (October 2018) 83 (5): B269-B279


We studied the problem of determining accurately the location of abandoned and sometimes undocumented wells and the challenging and increasingly important task related to subsurface reservoir integrity and regional economic development. We reviewed a variety of semiquantitative methods based on geophysical workflows, and we tested these with airborne magnetic data collected at two field sites. Our main conclusion is that airborne magnetic surveys represent a high-value tool to aid in the accurate determination of abandoned well locations and characteristics. At one site, two surveys were collected at slightly different altitudes to compare workflow robustness and allow the observed vertical magnetic gradient to be included in well detection workflows. We also investigated using focal zone anomaly statistics (using the magnetic field intensity and its first and second horizontal derivatives), analytic signal, tilt derivative, and calculated vertical gradient. In addition, we used a 3D inversion of a small subset of data to investigate the successful recovery of well-related magnetic susceptibility distribution and estimate subsurface well topology. The recovered magnetic susceptibility volume showed distinctive vertically elongated objects that correspond to known wells. Maximum likelihood estimation and confidence calculations were then applied to these data sets and indicated that high-confidence well locations could be determined and characterized using such airborne total magnetic data.

ISSN: 0016-8033
EISSN: 1942-2156
Coden: GPYSA7
Serial Title: Geophysics
Serial Volume: 83
Serial Issue: 5
Title: Geophysical helicopter-based magnetic methods for locating wells
Affiliation: Aarhus Geophysics, Risskov, Denmark
Pages: B269-B279
Published: 201810
Text Language: English
Publisher: Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Tulsa, OK, United States
References: 65
Accession Number: 2019-003366
Categories: Applied geophysicsEconomic geology, geology of energy sources
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Includes appendices
Illustration Description: illus.
N34°10'00" - N43°30'00", W106°25'00" - W106°10'00"
Secondary Affiliation: National Energy Technology Laboratory, USA, United StatesUniversity of Pittsburgh, USA, United StatesSander Geophysics, CAN, Canada
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2019, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 201902
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