Integrated Dynamic Modelling of the Sea Lion Field

Lopez Marmolejo, Aldo (Premier Oil Plc) | Newbould, Robert (Premier Oil Plc) | Lawton, Laura (SLR Consulting Limited) | Godlewski, John (Schlumberger Limited)



The Sea Lion Field is an Early Cretaceous turbidite fan complex, located in the North Falkland Basin, 220 km north of the Falkland Islands. The reservoirs are dominated by amalgamated high density turbidites (Bouma Ta and liquefied sediment gravity flows), but also contain low density turbidites, linked debrites and interdigitated lacustrine mudstones. An integrated dynamic modelling workflow which incorporates the latest understanding of the Sea Lion Field sedimentology and reservoir heterogeneities is presented.

The workflow focuses on capturing and retaining reservoir heterogeneity throughout the reservoir modelling process. Coarse-scale heterogeneity is captured during the construction of the full-field geological (static) model and conserved in the dynamic model by using the same grid dimensions. Sedimentological features (fine-scale heterogeneity) below the grid resolution are captured in separate, 3D core-scale models. Through a process of kv/kh and relative permeability upscaling, the core-scale models are used to inform effective permeability in the full-field model.

Detailed interpretation of the available core data enables a statistical evaluation, which underpins the construction of core-scale models for the individual rock types. The resulting 3D core-scale models are representative of the reservoir and the development concept in terms of reservoir dip, lithology, petrophysical and fluid properties and well spacing. Matching the coarse model behaviour to the core-scale model forecast is an inverse problem with multiple possible solutions; therefore, assisted history matching is a valuable tool for quickly obtaining, comparing and ranking possible upscaled relative permeability functions and kv/kh ratios. The upscaled relative permeability functions output from the assisted history matching workflow correct for numerical dispersion and reproduce the waterflood behaviour observed in the core-scale model, thus capturing the influence of small-scale heterogeneities.

This integrated dynamic modelling workflow allows for the direct use of detailed geological models characterising the main heterogeneities impacting flow behaviour, while retaining the ability to investigate and capture small-scale heterogeneities below the resolution of the full-field static model, thus avoiding the cumbersome process of upscaling geological properties. Assisted history matching and optimization have been integrated into the workflow, providing a robust method to produce upscaled relative permeability functions that replicate the expected waterflood behaviour.