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

Postgraduate Course: Seismic Reflection Interpretation (PGGE11144)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThe course introduces the seismic reflection method, including land and marine data acquisition and processing, with emphasis on the geological interpretation of seismic reflection data. The following topics are covered:
- The role of the seismic reflection method in exploration;
- Basic principles of the seismic reflection method;
- Subsurface velocities, reflection coefficient and acoustic impedance;
- Seismic data acquisition, including sources and receivers, 2D and 3D source-receiver configurations;
- Seismic data processing steps, including normal moveout and stack, static corrections, deconvolution and migration;
- Sonic and density logs, check shots, well ties and vertical seismic profile (VSP);
- The seismic wavelet: bandwidth and resolution;
- Seismic structural interpretation;
- Seismic stratigraphic interpretation;
- Petrel interpretation software.
- Practical exercises include the interpretation of a seismic reflection dataset using Petrel interpretation software.
Course description Week 1
Lecture 1 Introduction: the role of the seismic reflection method in exploration; echoes, sound propagation, the seismic reflection method and its applications, normal-incidence reflection and the seismic profile.
Lecture 2 Seismic velocities: P-waves and S-waves; solids and fluids; reflection coefficient; acoustic impedance; primaries and multiples; thin layers.
1. Calculate depths and layer thicknesses from velocities and two-way travel times.
2. Calculate reflection coefficients from physical properties of rocks and fluids for different interfaces.

Week 2 No lectures
Practical: Introduction to Petrel.

Week 3
Lecture 3 Estimating velocities from seismic data: normal moveout and stack; the effect on multiples; the zero-offset section; the effect of dip.
Lecture 4 Seismic Data Acquisition: land and marine sources; land and marine receivers; 2D and 3D acquisition.
Practical: Practical seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 4
Lecture 5 Seismic data processing: near-surface effects and static corrections; common mid-point, normal moveout and stack; suppressing multiples and deconvolution; conversion from time to space and migration.
Lecture 6 Structural Interpretation: faults, folds, unconformities, diapirism and salt tectonics.
Practical: Practical seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 5
Lecture 7 Stratigraphic interpretation: hydrocarbon traps, evidence of pinch-outs, reefs and channels; seismic facies analysis.
Lecture 8 The seismic wavelet; frequency bandwidth; time and depth resolution; the pinch-out, or wedge.
Practical: Practical seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 6 No lectures
Practical: Practical seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 7 No lectures
Practical: Practical seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 8
Lecture 9 Seismic-to-well tie: sonic log; density log; check shots; reflection coefficient series; synthetic seismogram; vertical seismic profile.
Lecture 10 The seismic report; introduction to the assessment.
Practical: Seismic-to-well tie.

Week 9 No lectures
Practical: Seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 10 Revision lecture. Questions and answers
Practical: Seismic interpretation with Petrel.

Week 11 No lectures

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None.
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  20
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 24, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 74 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) The course assessment (100 %) is a report written about the interpretation of seismic profiles in the North Sea. Deadline is 12:00, Monday, 4 December 2017.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand the basic principles of the seismic reflection method
  2. Understand the relationship between time and depth and the effect of dip
  3. Understand the importance of well ties and knowing the seismic wavelet
  4. Carry out a geological interpretation of a seismic section and make maps of seismic horizons
  5. Write a seismic report
Reading List
Suggested reading

McQuillin, R. M., Bacon, M., and Barclay, W. An Introduction to Seismic Interpretation.
W. Graham & Trotman, 1984 - 287 pages.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserProf Anton Ziolkowski
Tel: (0131 6)50 8511
Course secretaryMiss Susie Crocker
Tel: (0131 6)51 7126
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