New plays on the Greater East Shetland Platform (UKCS Quadrants 3, 8-9, 14-16) – part 1: Regional setting and a working petroleum system
Stefano Patruno and William Reid
Journal name: First Break
Issue: Vol 34, No 12, December 2016 pp. 33 - 43
Info: Article, PDF ( 14.28Mb )
Price: € 30
Despite significant discoveries within Palaeogene-age reservoirs (e.g., Mariner) the East Shetland Platform (ESP) is underexplored, with only ten wells per 1000 km2. Mesozoic units are thin or absent whilst Paleozoic reflectors resemble acoustic basement on legacy seismic. Recent 3D dual-sensor broadband surveys (GeoStreamer) covering 17,200 km2 over parts of Quadrants 3, 8-9, 14-16 have allowed for clearer imaging. Here, this dataset is interpreted, leading to new insights into this large frontier region. The ESP petroleum system comprises multiple proven reservoir and source intervals, with viable play fairways. Up to four regional unconformities are interpreted, merging into fewer erosional surfaces on persistent highs. Elsewhere on the ESP, predominantly subsiding Permo-Triassic depocentres contain a nearly continuous Paleozoic-Mesozoic succession. The most prominent of these, to the south and south-west of the Beryl Embayment, is here referred to as the ‘Crawford-Skipper Basin’. Existing hydrocarbon discoveries on the ESP are in the vicinities (<7 km) of intra-platform Permo-Triassic basin margins. Exploration close to such basins is inherently less risky due to possible positive influences of deep-seated structures on the petroleum system. These include: (1) formation of Meso-Cenozoic closures; (2) Devonian source maturity and presence of simple fault-related migration pathways; (3) viability of sub-Cretaceous reservoir-trap-seal configurations.