Abstract

A rock-physics study and AVO modeling study have been completed to assist in the interpretation of seismic amplitude and AVO anomalies in the Shipwreck Trough of the offshore Otway Basin of southeastern Australia. Elastic log data, core data (both full and sidewall), and associated thin-section analysis of composition and texture were available on several wells, and these data are important in calibrating proposed rock-physics models that suggest that incorporating cement is critical to understanding anomalies in seismic and measured log data. Lithoprobability volumes based on conventional interpretation paradigms, such as low VP/VS values indicating gas presence, that do not incorporate an understanding of rock physics lead to biased interpretations. Ratios in particular can be misleading because there is ambiguity about whether an anomalous ratio is driven by the numerator or denominator. As a classic gas indicator, low VP/VS values are interpreted to be driven by a decrease in VP associated with gas replacing brine in a rock. Using Lamé impedance terms λρ and μρ, however, provides an alternative interpretation template that does not use ratios and can improve insight into rock properties. As in this recent case study, using lambda-mu-rho (LMR) can be an important tool when shear velocity has increased relative to compressional velocity, irrespective of any pore-fluid change. In the reservoir rocks of the Shipwreck Trough, low VP/VS in both gas-saturated and brine-filled sandstone is caused by quartz cement. This presents a substantial challenge to the use of a standard rock-physics template. In LMR space, however, low VP/VS data points clearly are characterized by high shear rigidity — an important point to recognize and incorporate into AVO interpretation workflows.

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