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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Postgraduate Courses (School of GeoSciences)

Postgraduate Course: Geology for Earth Resources (PGGE11173)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThe course is designed for non-geoscientists who require a basic knowledge of geology associated with petroleum exploration, carbon storage or groundwater. The focus is on sedimentary rocks, in which almost all petroleum is located, and in which almost all CO2 storage will occur. We start with fundamentals: the 3 rock groups, the geological timescale, geological maps, the basic petroleum system as an analogue for CO2 storage. We then focus on the origin and physical properties of clastic and carbonate sedimentary rocks which form the majority of reservoirs and aquifers. We examine how earth movements make the traps that hold petroleum / CO2, and briefly look at the geological evolution of the North Sea. There will also be an introduction to the geophysics of CO2 detection in the subsurface, and to the seismic method which is used to image the subsurface. The course includes a single day field excursion with an assessed map exercise which will contribute to the assessment of which the remainder will be by examination.
Course description Wk1: Fundamentals and intro to maps

L1: Introduction to Geology
Rock types: Igneous, sediments, metamorphic
Sediments: beds, basins, Walther┐s Law
Basic petroleum system as analogue for trapping
The Geological Timescale, dating of rocks
Unconformities and sequence stratigraphy
Geological Maps

L2: Intro to Maps

Practical: simple map exercises. Uniformly dipping beds

Wk 2: Clastics

L1: Geology of Sands

Origin (weathering and erosion, provenance)
Depositional models
Reservoir heterogeneity

L1: Geology of Sands (II)

Physical description (porosity, packing, permeability, bedding)
Porosity decline with depth;
Petrology and classification;
Diagenesis and secondary porosity

Practical ┐ basic rock types

Wk 3: Seals and others

L1: Structural Geology

Plate tectonic models, basins
Geological History of UK / North Sea

L2: Shales
physical description (porosity, permeability, capillary seals)
depositional models
petrology and classification

Depositional models, poro-perm, dissolution, diapirism


Practical ┐ More practise maps, with folds and faults; sandstones and carbonates

Wk 4: Carbonates and Introduction to the Fieldtrip

L1: Carbonates

L2: Intro to Berwick FE: ┐ note taking, aims, assessment, introduction to local geology

Wk 5: Geophysics

L1: Reconnaissance exploration techniques
Seismic surveying
Magnetic surveying
Gravity surveying

L2: Wireline logging
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
1. You will gain knowledge of geology required for CCS projects.
2. You will learn to communicate with geoscientists involved in collaborative projects, e.g. CCS schemes.
3.You will develop an understand of the importance of geology in determining reservoir quality for CCS or hydrocarbon prospecting.
Reading List
Basic Geology:

Understanding the Earth:
Chapter 15, Sedimentary Basins
Chapter 16, Clastic Sediments

Earth's Dynamic Systems 9th Edition:
Chapter 5, Sedimentary Rocks
Chapter 10, Weathering

Sedimentology & Sedimentary Basins, from Turbulence to Tectonics (M. Leeder)
Part 6: Continental sediments
Part 7: Marine sediments

Elements of Petroleum Geology, Selley, R.C., 2nd Edition, 1998, Chapter 6: The Reservoir.


Geological field Techniques by Angela Coe (the sedimentary section only).

Sedimentary Rocks in the Field (Geological Field Guide) by Maurice E. Tucker,

The Field Description of Sedimentary Rocks (Geological Society of London Handbook Series) by Maurice E. Tucker (same book but older?)

For the practise maps:

An Introduction to Geological Structures and Maps, Bennison, Olver and Moseley, Eighth Edition, 2011 (or older version, isn't important), Hodder Education
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Keywordspetroleum exploration carbon storage CO2 storage
Course organiserDr Mark Wilkinson
Tel: (0131 6)50 5943
Course secretaryMr Edwin Cruden
Tel: (0131 6)50 2543
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