Shale Science Initative


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Matthias Greb, M.Sc., Senior Geologic Advisor and Petroleum Systems Specialist, contributed work on Kerogen Kinetics which highlights EGI’s laboratory-based source rock characterization capabilities. This study is in development and offers companies not only analysis of their own source rock samples but also access to data on source rocks provided by the other participating companies, one benefit of EGI’s cost shared research model.

For the exploitation of unconventional resources, having an accurate prediction of expected fluid type and knowing the extent of the play fairway are critical to making sound business decisions. Generic models of source rock generation and expulsion do not capture the large degree of variability in the composition of organic matter between different source rocks. This can lead to incorrect predictions of in-situ hydrocarbon volumes, key fluid properties and ultimately to poor play fairway delineation.

Specialized instrumentation and procedures are needed to accurately measure the kinetic parameters that describe the decomposition of kerogen to petroleum. EGI uses the HAWK™ Instrument from Wildcat Technologies to run bulk pyrolysis with kinetic parameters calculated using KINETICS 2015 (GeoIsoChem Corp.; Braun and Burnham, 1994). An example from the Anadarko Basin illustrated how an improved understanding of kerogen kinetics can significantly change the prediction of fluid type and the location of the play fairway.

The overriding message of the conference is that optimizing unconventional development requires integration of geology, geophysics, and engineering across a wide range of scales. EGI’s work spans from the nano-scale to the plate-scale and transcends traditional discipline boundaries.

The EGI poster highlighted three research projects illustrating work which has been Completed, work In Progress, and work In Development covering the subjects of Improved Liquid RecoveryKerogen Kinetics, and Mechanical Stratigraphy.

Source Rock Characterization, Development Strategies, and Fracture Complexity: Highlights of Shale Science Research at EGI

Matthias Greb, Milind Deo, and W. Lansing Taylor

Applied Geoscience Conference, 2016

Read more about Sale Smart Research: Improved Kinetic Models for Resource Play Assessment