Mark Bentley

Building Good Models

Monday 27 Nov 17

Reasonable representations of the subsurface is of high importance when making forecasts, forecasts good enough to add value to a commercial decision. Mark Bentley, Training Director at AGR TRACS International, gave a two-day workshop on modelling and the important issues to take into account when forecasting how a reservoir looks.

What is your strategy when modelling a reservoir? Do you ask yourself the right questions during the process? At a course on Building Good Models, Training Director from AGR TRACS International, Mark Bentley taught the participants to make sure to understand the question that you need to answer before deciding on the model to build. A full field model is not always necessary to answer the question at hand.

The use of stochastics and probability were also in focus; the promise of geostatistics to solve reservoir-forecasting problems sometimes results in disappointments. Probabilistic attempts to predict desirable outcomes can yield naïve result if applied blindly. Geostatistical methods are often complex and not as opaque as presented.

“The key to success is the formulation of the uncertainty list. If the issues, which could cause a business decision to fail is identified, then the modelling workflow will capture this and the decision risk can be mitigated. If the issue is missed no amount of modelling of any kind will be able to compensate,” says Birgitte D. Larsen, Geoscientist at Danish Hydrocarbon Research and Technology Centre (DHRTC).

Workshop and much more
Frederic Amour, Postdoc at DHRTC, had the opportunity to work on reservoir modelling in the past and at a first glance, this course was a good opportunity to refresh his knowledge and receive advices from an expert to better design a modelling strategy. However, the workshop turned out to be much more.

“First of all, Mark is a great orator who knows how to arouse enthusiasm and interest of the audience throughout this two-day workshop. When looking back to the workshop, the word that comes back to my mind is “inspiring,” tells Frederic Amour and stresses that:

"... Mark is a great orator who knows how to arouse enthusiasm and interest of the audience..."
Frederic Amour, Postdoc at DHRTC

“3-D geological modelling is a large topic of research with many analytical and simulation tools that can be implemented in many-many ways to build e.g. a model in petrel – easy to get lost! In addition, find the right balance between a fully deterministic and stochastic approach is always tricky even for experts.”

Marks shared his experience in each step of the modelling process and provide a methodology from which participants can rely on to establish the most appropriate, fit-for-purpose modelling strategy for a specific case study.

Though not experience in reservoir modelling, Kenni Dinesen Petersen, Postdoc at Aarhus University, found the workshop rewarding:

“Mark is a good teacher who lectures with a high level of energy and enthusiasm, and he does a good job explaining fairly complicated concepts through anecdotes and thought-provoking exercises. I would not say that the skills learned and philosophical concepts discussed in the course are all directly applicable to my scientific work, but I think I now have a much better perspective of how my own research can be made much more relevant for industry application.”

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