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Petroleum Exploration Methods

Direct Indications

Hydrocarbon deposits found through natural seepages of oil, outcrops of oil-bearing rocks and various forms of gas seepages such as mud volcanoes.

However it does not necessarily prove that oil exists in commercial quantities.

Geological Exploration Methods

A petroleum geologists main job is to select promising site for the drilling of exploratory wells based on his prediction of an areas subsurface stratigraphy and structure.

Subsurface maps include the following basic forms: 1. Structural contour maps: maps composed of lines connecting points of equal elevation above or below datum (normally sea level)








connecting points of equal bed thickness. 3. Cross sections: a form of subsurface presentation which depicts the position and thickness of various strata.

Subsurface maps are a necessary part of any reservoir engineering study; and petroleum engineers, as well as geologists, must be completely familiar with their

construction and interpretation.

The data for subsurface maps are obtained from a number of sources, such as


Well logs: representations of some rock property of properties versus depth.

2. Core


shallow, small hole drilling for only. i.e., The obtained formations as small

information encountered

purposes are core,

cylindrical samples which are readily and accurately identified.


3. Strat tests: deep exploratory holes drilled primarily for information.

The construction of subsurface maps requires great interpretive skill

Geophysical Exploration

The methods are gravitational method, magnetic method and seismic.

The gravitational method is based on Newtons hypothesis that every particle in the universe attracts every other particles in the manner defined by the equation
F= m1m2 r2


F = attractive force m1. m2 = masses of particles in question r = distance between particles = gravitational constant (6.67 X10-8) in cgs units.