Dipoles

Multi-tasking machines looking in two directions simultaneously  
Being dipolar is not all bad

You’re an expert at multi-tasking.  But, does it sometimes feel like the walls are closing in on you, and there’s never enough time to actually leverage and use seismic data effectively? You know there is greater value to be gained by deeply investigating and interpreting the data, but it seems the majority of your time is spent in operations (and meetings).

 

Do you have the bandwidth or the tools to fully assess the results of the attribute volumes the QI contractor just delivered? The days are already long, but you have a gut feeling the seismic attributes could be the key to providing a more predictive understanding of well performance as it’s related to rock properties.

 

It’s just too bad you don’t have enough time to test your hunch...

Do more than scratch the surface.

Demonstrate instant value from seismic attributes.

“Why is there never enough time to do it right, but there’s always enough time to do it over?”  We don’t know who first uttered this statement, but it’s such a great sarcastic reminder to measure twice, cut once!

With the continued volatility in oil and gas prices, controlling costs has now become the number 1 priority for operators. In addition to (or perhaps instead of) locating new reserves, companies are trying to understand how they can optimize performance in their drilling, completions and development programs. Doing it over isn’t efficient at the best of times,  but particularly so in this low-margin environment.

 

Seismic attribute volumes contain so much information for assessing reservoir quality to optimize drilling results, but they aren’t regularly used. Why not?  Different reasons, specific to operations, but in general, the answer is because the value of seismic attributes (including their limitations) has not been understood, nor conveyed effectively.

If you think you’re dipolar already, wait until you start demonstrating new and valuable ways of incorporating seismic attributes into the mix and contributing to improved well-planning and performance.

 

It all starts with seismic advocates!

Shale Plays

The factory drilling approach of the early shale craze, meant there was little time or desire to use seismic because ‘we already knew where the oil/gas was’. Locating the resource still isn’t the problem.  The problem, operators are discovering, is the subtleties of the reservoir and resource quality that mean the difference between an economic well (or stage) and and an uneconomic one. Refining spacing and completion parameters, and dynamic interaction between wells are the challenge.  If only something could predict subtle geological property variations before drilling. Hmmm..

Conventional

For conventional exploration plays or offshore assets, the investment risk has always been high therefore programs and investigations were generally given the luxury of time. Seismic data has always been thoroughly utilized in this environment, but even so, attributes were slow to be incorporated. We think this might be due to a possible disconnect between the seismic workflow and reservoir modeling and asset team collaborations. Seismic attributes, integrated effectively, could provide that extra level of confidence that leads to greater economic certainty.

Oil Sands

In heavy oil and oil sands where production requires steam injection, understanding the rock and fluid property changes before and after steaming is critical for the economic success of current and future developments. A similar resource-play attitude (the oil is everywhere) prevailed. And vertical evaluation wells are relatively inexpensive in this shallow environment.  However, it turns out these reservoirs are highly variable and the spacing required for accurate reservoir characterization from evaluation wells just isn’t feasible. High frequency, finely sampled seismic data calibrated to the wealth of well data is a rich, underutilized source of detailed reservoir information, before (and during) steaming.  Sound QI led the use of seismic in this play with work as early as 2005 showing detailed and accurate seismic reservoir characterization in the oil sands.

Multicomponent

If you work for one of those forward-thinking innovative companies out there, you may even have multicomponent (converted-shear) data.  But do you think you have used it effectively? Didn’t think so. Attributes derived from this data type are just as useful to incorporate into the big picture, and in fact, provide a perspective on geology that is missing from P-wave data alone.

Advocating for your seismic data!

How to be a (dipolar) rock star.

If you’ve invested months on quantitative interpretation, and the results are now sitting on the shelf, it’s time to dust them off and get busy interpreting all those volumes. Using seismic data to drive strategic business decisions means we need to make seismic shine! It needs to deliver valuable insight back into the development program before the drilling and completion decisions are made.

 

QI Pro offers the most flexible, affordable and intuitive way for geophysical interpreters (even if they’re not QI experts) to leverage and interpret the attribute volumes produced by others. When you can’t afford to waste time, you can use the machine-guided assistance from QI Pro’s Attribute Advisor to give you some early indications of which properties and combinations of properties are the most meaningful to investigate.

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