T12 Theme 12: Techniques and technologies in sedimentary research – state of the art and perspectives

T12-SS01 – Seismic sedimentology of thin beds

Conveners: Zeng H. (University of Texas, USA), Zhu X. (China University of Petroleum, China), Olariu C. (University of Texas, USA), Zhang X. (China University of Petroleum, China)

In the subsurface, many depositional units are composed of “thin beds”, such as small channels, splays and sand-sheets, which commonly form hydrocarbon reservoirs. The seismic response to thin beds is complex due to interferences between interfaces of different lithologies. Seismic interpretation is traditionally low resolution and inappropriate for sedimentological research,such as determining lithology and geometries of thin beds. During the pursuit of thin-bed sedimentology, integrated methods and tools have been developed. Seismic sedimentology is the seismic investigation of sedimentary rocks and depositional processes, with a focus on the mapping of litho-geomorphologic facies by joint study of seismic lithology and seismic geomorphology. As a supplement to the seismic facies analysis in traditional seismic stratigraphy, it emphasizes on high-resolution seismic imaging and interpretation of subsurface sedimentology (lithology, facies, and reservoir quality), analogous to outcrop-based and well-based sedimentology. We propose this session for researchers to (1) discuss principles of seismic resolution and detection of thin beds, (2) present new tools based on seismic sedimentology and other relevant methods, (3) showcase exploration and production examples, and (4) debate challenges and future directions. Although applications in any basins are welcome, we encourage case studies in lacustrine basins, where the thin-bed depositional units predominate.

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