Facies, geometry, architecture and dynamic stratigraphy

Appraisal and development of clastic reservoirs rely on sandbody geometries and porosity. In addition, most clastic reservoirs are affected by natural fractures which have either a positive or negative impact on reservoir quality and well performance, be it positive from the presence of open fracture networks or negative from the presence of low k fractures and faults. This clastics field course sets out to equip the oil industry geoscientist and reservoir engineer with the essential basic knowledge to work with clastic reservoirs. The Cretaceous outcrops are based on an updated version of the paper Depositional sequence response to foreland deformation in the Upper Cretaceous of the southern Pyrenees, Spain, AAPG Bulletin, 2000, by L. Ardèvol, J. Klimowitz, J. Malagón and P. C. Nagtegaal.

Instructor: Lluís Ardèvol
Location: south-central Pyrenees, the course begins and ends in Barcelona
Meeting point: Monday 13, 14:00h, Barcelona downtown or airport
Trip end: Friday 17, 18:00h, airport or meeting point
Level: basic / skill
Delivery: field trip
Physical demand: easy short hike on level terrain



  • Tremp-Graus and Àger basins (Eocene)
  • Tremp basin (Garumnian facies, Areny sandstone, Upper Cretaceous)


  • Fluvial, deltaic, estuarine, tidal environments
  • Slope sands
  • The channel concept. Meander channels vs bioturbated tidal bars
  • Combined flow deposits and hyperpycnites
  • Facies patterns, cyclicity, sandbody geometries and architecture, reservoir potential
  • Compartmentalisation, shale distribution, net/gross variations, pinch out, fault and erosional closures, rock heterogeneity, flow-units and barriers
  • Depositional models, sequence stratigraphy, influence of syndepositional tectonics


  • Overview of fractured reservoirs (classroom)
  • Structural geology and geomechanics for fractured reservoir characterisation (classroom)
  • Mechanical stratigraphy and fractures
  • Fracture hierarchy from joints to corridors and fault damage zones
  • Fractures in the sub-seismic volume
  • Fracture porosity mapping exercises

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