We model migration using 2D or 3D basin models. 2D models are normally based on regional cross-sections, which are often derived from an interpreted 2D seismic line, ideally perpendicular to the basin axis or along the anticipated migration pathways. 2D models can enhance the understanding of the development of main basin structures through time; show the timing of hydrocarbon generation and migration; and identify structural traps and possible accumulations. Well-chosen 2D lines can be a useful tool, for assessment of charge risk and seal effectiveness. However, volumetric calculations are not possible in 2D models. In addition, if the 2D lines are not appropriately located, interpretation of the results can be misleading.
The most-quantitative simulations of hydrocarbon migration, accumulation, and loss can be achieved using 3D basin modeling. We use 3D modeling to conduct comprehensive interpretations, including prospect evaluation (charge risk) and qualitative and quantitative volume assessments.
2D and 3D models are built using a combination of available well data, existing geological maps, and relevant subsurface information away from well control (including seismic attributes and seismic inversion). Where 3D seismic data are available, it is possible to build 3D basin models from already existing 3D geometries.