Petroleum Science

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 363–375 | Cite as

The tectonic fracture modeling of an ultra-low permeability sandstone reservoir based on an outcrop analogy: A case study in the Wangyao Oilfield of Ordos Basin, China

  • Xiaoming ZhaoEmail author
  • Li Liu
  • Jialiang Hu
  • Xiaojun Zhou
  • Min Li


Due to inherent limits of data acquisition and geophysical data resolution, there are large uncertainties in the characterization of subsurface fractures. However, outcrop analogies can provide qualitative and quantitative information on a large number of fractures, based on which the accuracy of subsurface fracture characterization can be improved. Here we take the tectonic fracture modeling of an ultra-low permeability sandstone reservoir based on an outcrop analogy, a case study of the Chang611 Formation of the Upper Triassic Yanchang Group of the Wangyao Oilfield in the Ordos Basin of China. An outcrop at the edge of the basin is a suitable analog for the reservoir, but the prerequisite is that they must have equivalent previous stress fields, similar final structural characteristics, relative timing and an identical depositional environment and diagenesis. The relationship among fracture density, rock type and bed thickness based on the outcrop is one of the most important fracture distribution models, and can be used to interpret fracture density in individual wells quantitatively. Fracture orientation, dip, geometry and scale, also should be described and measured in the outcrop, and can be used together with structure restoration and single well fracture density interpretation to guide fracture intensity prediction on bed surfaces and to constrain the construction of the 3D fracture geometry model of the subsurface reservoir. The application of the above principles shows the outcrop-based tectonic fracture models of the target ultra-low permeability sandstone reservoir are consistent with fractures inferred from microseismic interpretation and tracer tests. This illustrated that the fracture modeling based on the outcrop analogy is reliable and can reduce the uncertainty in stochastic fracture modeling.

Key words

Ultra-low permeability sandstone tectonic fracture modeling outcrop analog subsurface reservoir 3D modeling 


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Copyright information

© The Authors 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaoming Zhao
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Li Liu
    • 1
  • Jialiang Hu
    • 3
  • Xiaojun Zhou
    • 1
  • Min Li
    • 4
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Natural Gas Geology of Sichuan ProvinceSouthwest Petroleum UniversitySichuanChina
  2. 2.School of Geoscience and TechnologySouthwest Petroleum UniversitySichuanChina
  3. 3.Abu Dhabi National Oil CompanyAbu DhabiUnited Arab Emirates
  4. 4.State Key Laboratory of Oil and Gas Reservoir Geology and ExploitationSouthwest Petroleum UniversitySichuanChina

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