Seismic technology, quality improvements, use of advanced attributes and all G&G based integration have greatly improved the ability to derisk plays, leads and prospects and improve exploration drilling success rates. These technologies and studies however cannot predict hydrocarbon accumulation directly or distinguish HC from non-HC gases, thermogenic from biogenic charge or their saturations. Consequently, the probability of success (POS) has been ‘bottlenecked’ for years and influenced the quality of risked decision making, especially in frontier exploration.

Geo-Microbial Hydrocarbon Detection (GMHD) is a non-seismic method to detect and analyze hydrocarbon microseepage which leaks from hydrocarbon accumulations at depth. It measures the population of specific hydrocarbon oxidizing bacteria (HOB) in soil or sea bottom sediment over a potential accumulation. GMHD technology and a 4G model (integration of Geo-microbiology data with Geochemistry, Geology and Geophysics) have been conducted during 12+ years in nearly 100 surveys. The post-4G drilling of 72 wells demonstrates success rates of 83% and 84% in predicting dry wells and discoveries, respectively.

Three case histories covering onshore and offshore are discussed in detail to further prove the effectiveness of the GMHD and 4G integration model in de-risking exploration activities and mitigating CO2 charge in deep water.


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