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Investigatingthe Link Between Depositional Process and Stratigraphic Connectivity in Marginal Marine Systems

Matthew Corke - 2014


Degree of a Bachelor of Science (Petroleum Geology & Geophysics)

Australian School of Petroleum

The University of Adelaide


Marginal marine settings can be host to significant hydrocarbon deposits that are of interest to the oil and
gas industry. Understanding the stratigraphic architecture of these marginal marine hydrocarbon deposits
is therefore fundamental in the development of more efficient hydrocarbon extraction programs.
The aim of this research project is to investigate the link between depositional process and stratigraphic
connectivity in marginal marine systems in order to develop a method for predicting reservoir connectivity.
Through analysing pre-existing WAVE Knowledgebase data, a series of rules and relationships relating
depositional processes to stratigraphic connectivity in marginal marine reservoirs is anticipated.

By analysing marginal marine outcrop data in the WAVE Knowledgebase, where compartmentalisation in
a two dimensional sense is known, theoretical results for connectivity can be compared to this original
outcrop data from the WAVE Knowledgebase.

Six examples of ancient marginal marine system analogues were used as the basis of this study. In total 93 Element Complex Assemblage Sets (ECAS) and 107 Element Complex Assemblage (ECA) were analysed.

Digital measurements of each Element Complex Assemblage Sets (ECAS) and Element Complex Assemblage (ECA) were made using Adobe Illustrator. These measurements of total unit thickness, sandstone thickness and shale thickness were compiled into a database. Data regarding dominant depositional processes, accommodation to sediment supply ratio (A/S) and systems tracts for each architectural unit were extracted from the WAVE Knowledgebase and compiled into a database.

Using the data collected from each stratigraphic unit, Relative Stratigraphic Compartmentalization
Potential Plots and compartmentalisation rankings were able to be generated. The data was also analysed in Spotfire for statistical links.

The study found that a link between mixed process marginal marine systems and an increase in reservoir
compartmentalisation may exist. This finding is worth further investigation to demonstrate its significance,
and may be used as a method to help predict reservoir compartmentalisation.

Australian School of Petroleum



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