Abstract

In the Enping 17 sag within the Pearl River Mouth Basin in the South China Sea, one wildcat well has been drilled to the Lower Paleogene Enping Formation (FM EP) and partially into the Wenchang Formation (FM WC) for deep formation hydrocarbon exploration. However, no commercial play was discovered. The reasons for this are clear if the petroleum systems modeling is examined. In FM EP, the main reason for failure is due to poor sealing. In FM WC, the failure is due to the lack of a good reservoir for hydrocarbon accumulation. Encountering a 9 m thick reservoir at a depth of 4650 m indicates that braided fluvial delta and lowstand turbidite sandstone may develop in FM WC. With the objective of establishing cap rock in FM EP and reservoir rock in FM WC, and in the absence of sufficient well data, an integrated framework for 3D seismic reservoir characterization of offshore deep and thin layers was developed. The workflow includes seismic data reprocessing, well-log-based rock-physics analysis, seismic structure interpretation, simultaneous amplitude variation with offset (AVO) inversion, 3D lithology prediction, and geologic integrated analysis. We present four key solutions to address four specific challenges in this case study: (1) the application of adaptive deghosting techniques to remove the source and streamer depth-related ghost notches in the seismic data bandwidth and the relative amplitude-preserved bandwidth extension technique to improve the seismic data resolution; (2) a practical rock-physics modeling approach to consider the formation overpressure for pseudoshear sonic log prediction; (3) interactive and synchronized workflow between prestack 3D AVO inversion and seismic processing to predict a 9 m thick layer in FM WC through more than 60 rounds of cyclic tests; and (4) cross validation between seismic qualitative attributes and quantitative inversion results to verify the lithology prediction result under the condition of insufficient well data.

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