Flexible Simulation of Faults

Publication details

  • Part of: 2010 ATCE SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (Society of Petroleum Engineers, 2010)
  • Pages: 8
  • Year: 2010
  • Link:

Fault geometry is modelled on basis of seismic data, but restricted by fault observations in wells. Due to uncertainties in depth migration, seismic interpretation and well data, there is a significant uncertainty in the geometry and position of the faults. Fault uncertainty impact reservoir volume, flow properties and well planning, and can be studied by stochastic simulation of faults.

We have developed a method for stochastic simulation of fault surfaces and fault networks using standard geostatistical methods. This is made possible by the fault parameterization used, where the faults are modelled as tilted surfaces. This new method is more flexible and efficient compared to already existing algorithms due to a simpler parameterization. Conditioning to fault observations in wells is also made simpler.

The fault is defined as a two-dimensional surface on a tilted reference plane. The uncertainty for a fault surface is bounded by a volume enclosing the fault surface. The smoothness of the simulated fault surfaces is controlled by variograms. The simulation is done by adding a simulated Gaussian residual. Well conditioning is done by kriging.

Using the described method we can simulate a set of fault realizations where the simulated faults look realistic, are within the defined uncertainty volumes, and honour well observations.

Technical contributions compared to previous work include efficient simulation of fault geometry, a flexible uncertainty model and well conditioning with no performance impact.