Thesis: Delineation of structural controls of fluid movement in reservoir based resources using the Magnetotelluric and other geophysical methods.
a. During the course of this research I aim to investigate regions of Western Australia with petroleum, gas and geothermal potential using Electromagnetic data collected as part of this research using the Magnetotelluric (MT) and Transient Electromagnetic (TEM) methods. My first aim is to develop new understanding of the resistivity structure of these areas, particularly the North Perth basin and margins, using existing gravity, magnetic and seismic data to constrain model development in order to further investigate structural controls on reservoir based resources.
Research will use this understanding to focus on the investigation and interpretation of geophysical anomalies associated with faults systems, in particular, fault systems hosted in different lithological environments, i.e. sedimentary and crystalline, as well as hydrological variations in sedimentary successions, fault fill, alteration and most importantly the presence of fluids on permeable fault systems.
I aim to develop workflows to integrate data sets, conducting comparative studies of acquisition systems as well as different processing and modelling techniques.
Why my research is important
Electromagnetic (EM) techniques, through measurement of electrical and magnetic fields, allow inferences of resistivity structure at depth to be made. Unlike gravity, magnetic and seismic techniques, which use contrasts in density, magnetic susceptibility or concentration of iron and sonic impedance to infer changes in rock types, EM methods use electrical properties such as resistivity and phase to infer physical properties at depth. When used in conjunction with these techniques, EM can provide additional information about geological systems which can greatly improve understanding.
The MT method, although originally developed in the early 50’s is becoming a more widely used tool in many geosciences disciplines thanks to developments in processing and acquisition techniques in the last decade. As a passive geophysical technique MT surveys are relatively cheap and can provide data from hundreds of meters to hundreds of kilometres. EM susceptibility to subtle changes in reservoirs have made it more attractive as a monitoring method in petroleum and geothermal for both resource development, stimulation and production. MT is being used in for monitoring and exploration in petroleum, CO2 sequestration, geothermal and minerals industries