We believe that the most effective way to generate new play concepts, refine old concepts, and ultimately be highly successful in petroleum exploration is increasing the depth and breadth of the geologic understanding. Without a deep geologic understanding of the region(s) in question, the results of interest (calculated number of barrels of oil generated or migrated) are generally of lower quality and result in more missed exploration opportunities. Therefore, while the primary modeling focus of Sirius Exploration Geochemistry is to build the best possible geologic models for our clients, be they 1D, 2D, or 3D, our process to get there is through deep geologic learning. Since most learning occurs during construction of the 1D models (where questions about thermal history, tectonics, and reconstruction of unconformities are addressed), we emphasize the value of 1D modeling as a stand-alone technology.
In the process of building these 1D models, we focus on integrating all aspects of geology with each other: tectonics with sedimentation rates and lithologies, tectonics with heat-flow history, and paleobathymetry and paleoelevation with tectonics, eustasy, and isostasy. Click here to watch our “Hidden Benefits of 1-D Modeling” video, which explains in detail our philosophy of and approach to modeling, and how our approach can benefit you.
That said, because 1D simulations alone cannot model pressures or migration and trapping of hydrocarbons, which are of great interest to those exploring both conventional and hybrid plays, we also carry out 2D and 3D modeling studies. We do so in full recognition that prediction of fluid-flow (migration) patterns includes significant uncertainties about permeability along the various possible migration pathways. In our migration modeling we strive to replicate system permeabilities rather than permeabilities derived solely from laboratory measurements on hand samples.
Basin modeling can be done in 1D, 2D, or 3D, depending on the client needs and data availability. Studies normally focus on one or both of two areas: maturity modeling and migration modeling, which includes expulsion and trapping of hydrocarbons. Studies that focus entirely or primarily on maturity questions can be carried out using only 1D software. In 1D modeling, we model individual locations independently of each other. Regional studies can easily be carried out by modeling multiple locations that can include calibration wells, non-calibration wells, and pseudowells, which are usually located along seismic lines.
Migration-modeling studies, in contrast, normally utilize 2D or 3D software designed specifically for the purpose of modeling fluid flow. Migration can be modelled using a variety or combination of approaches, including the traditional Darcy-flow, invasion percolation (IP), and flowpath method.
2D and 3D modeling studies often begin with the construction of 1D models. Most of the development of geologic concepts and calibration of the models is carried out in 1D, even when the ultimate goal is a 2D or 3D model.