Rock physics model for seismic velocity & fluid substitution in sub-resolution interbedded sand–shale sequences
N. Saxena, R. Hofmann, S. Dolan, R. Sarker, C. Bao and S. Gelinsky
Journal name: Geophysical Prospecting
Issue: Vol 67, No 4, May 2019 pp. 843 - 871
Info: Article, PDF ( 18.78Mb )
The measured geophysical response of sand–shale sequences is an average over multiple layers when the tool resolution (seismic or well log) is coarser than the scale of sand–shale mixing. Shale can be found within sand–shale sequences as laminations, dispersed in sand pores, as well as load bearing clasts. We present a rock physics framework to model seismic/sonic properties of sub-resolution interbedded shaly sands using the so-called solid and mineral substitution models. This modelling approach stays consistent with the conceptual model of the Thomas–Stieber approach for estimating volumetric properties of shaly sands; thus, this work connects established well log data-based petrophysical workflows with quantitative interpretation of seismic data for modelling hydrocarbon signature in sand–shale sequences. We present applications of the new model to infer thickness of sand–shale lamination (i.e., net to gross) and other volumetric properties using seismic data. Another application of the new approach is fluid substitution in sub-resolution interbedded sand–shale sequences that operate directly at the measurement scale without the need to downscale; such a procedure has many practical advantages over the approach of “first-downscale-and-then-upscale” as it is not very sensitive to errors in estimated sand fraction and end member sand/shale properties and remains stable at small sand/shale fractions.