Grid-free Facies Modelling of Inclined Heterolithic Strata in the McMurray Formation

  • Author / Creator
    Mohammad Hassanpour, Rahman
  • The McMurray Formation contains complex geological features that were partially formed in a fluvial-estuarine depositional environment. These geological features that are interrelated to each other exist with different shapes, patterns, and sizes. The inclined heterolithic strata (IHS) formed as part of kilometer scale channels contain continuous centimeter scale features that are important for flow characterization of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) recovery processes. Modelling the detailed facies in such depositional systems requires a methodology that integrates the shape and size of geological architectures and reflects heterogeneity over many scales. Object-based and event-based modelling provide the framework to integrate geological architectures into geostatistical facie models however, representation of geological architectures with discretized grid would result in the loss of small scale heterogeneity. This dissertation presents algorithms and workflows on grid-free modelling that allows modelling of multi-scale geological features without relating them to a grid system. The contributions of this work include 1) the development of a stochastic object-based algorithm for modelling of tidal channelized systems, 2) the development of a grid-free object-based algorithm that allows modelling of multi-scale geological features in the McMurray Formation, and 3) the construction of a grid-free training image library for the application of McMurray Formation facies modelling. The details of algorithms and workflows are discussed. The performance of the proposed methodology is compared to conventional geostatistical modelling techniques through thermal flow simulations.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2013
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Mining Engineering
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Chen, John (Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, University of Calgary)
    • Nouri, Alireza (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
    • Duesch, Clayton (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
    • Gingras, Murray (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences)
    • Leung, Juliana (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
    • Boisvert, Jeff (Civil and Environmental Engineering)