Assessment of Source Rock Distribution from Well and Seismic Data in the Great South Basin


Kadada Talal Khalid (Talal)


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Since 1976, the Great South Basin has undergone exploration for hydrocarbons. Eight exploratory wells have explored various structural highs within the basin. The basin was delineated by 30,000 km of 2D seismic data in the early 1970s to early 1980s, conducted by a number of New Zealand and international companies. In 2006 a new survey consisting of 3110 km of high resolution seismic tied the available wells off the SE coast of the South Island. Since then OMV New Zealand and other partners have collected more detailed data including a 3D seismic survey in 2012.
The aim of this study is to analyze and evaluate the source rocks and gas shows in the Great South Basin and to assess the extent of the source rocks in the seismic data. This includes an examination of seismic data surrounding the Kawau-1A well to evaluate the development of structural closure that would be instrumental in forming a potential trap.
Numerous sets of well data have been adapted and generated from the original composite logs prepared by companies such as Hunt to identify coal deposit intervals, thicknesses and occurrences and their subdivisions relative to age. The logged data, and in particular the coal intervals were correlated. Gas show intervals were evaluated in new sets of adapted well sections and the geochemistry measurements of total organic matter were plotted for eight wells. The coal source rock was then correlated in the seismic lines between the Tara-1 and Toroa-1 wells. Stratigraphic markers were picked on 13 seismic lines in the area of Kawau-1A, and data were mapped for four seismic markers in the Cretaceous, Paleocene, Miocene and Eocene. Another. 50 seismic lines were examined to discover the distribution of gas chimneys/volcanoes. IHS Kingdom software was used for generating the horizons and the contour maps. The results of the analysis show that the thickest coal source rock exists at Tara-1. The source rock correlations in the seismic lines are limited to a small area surrounding the well. Gas chimneys or small sediment volcanoes are found in many lines, particularly with high frequency near Toroa-1. Kawau-1A displays good closures developed at the top of the Cretaceous and Paleocene.

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Kadada Talal Khalid (Talal), “Assessment of Source Rock Distribution from Well and Seismic Data in the Great South Basin,” Otago Geology Theses, accessed May 22, 2024,

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