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Last modified: 28 Jun 2018 10:27

Course Overview

Petrophysics is fundamental to understanding the properties of hydrocarbon fields both for initial static volumes in place and potential and actual dynamic performance. It lies at the centre of all subsurface activities, whether in the context of open-hole evaluation of new wells, cased-hole operations on producing wells, or in an integrated team building reservoir models for asset evaluation, field development or reservoir management. The key aims of this course are to teach: the principles of petroleum exploration, development and production to staff entering the industry for the first time, and enough basic understanding to perform a simple reservoir evaluation.

Course Details

Study Type Postgraduate Level 5
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Professor David Macdonald

Qualification Prerequisites


What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Geology And Petroleum Geology (GL) (Studied)
  • Any Postgraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?


Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

  • Basic geology including rock types, sedimentary basins and geological structures
  • Petroleum source rocks and mechanisms
  • Reservoirs and their properties
  • Traps and seals
  • Geological mapping
  • Seismic acquisition/processing/interpretation
  • Gravity and magnetic
  • Play and prospect mapping
  • Valuation and risk
  • Drilling operations and safety
  • Formation evaluation, sampling and testing
  • Appraisal and economic value
  • Production engineering
  • Development drilling, production facilities and abandonment
  • View elements of petroleum geology in outcrop
  • Understand scale of core, logs, wells, seismic in relation to the reservoir
  • Petrophysics definition and contribution to formation evaluation
  • The nature, origin and properties of reservoir rocks including the main petrophysical parameters, porosity, permeability and water saturation.
  • Definitions of gross and net reservoir intervals and calibration to core
  • Introduction to coring and the associated core analysis data
  • Understanding the borehole environment
  • Mud log data, introduction and interpretation
  • Evolution of logging tool technology, methods of conveyance and depth measurement
  • Borehole quality and the calliper log
  • Formation evaluation data, principles of tool measurement and applications including gamma ray, SP log, porosity logs, resistivity and formation pressure
  • Planning data acquisition programmes
  • Use of log header information
  • Depth control and validity
  • Log quality assurance for standard formation evaluation tool set
  • Capillary distribution of fluids, free water level and fluid contacts
  • Quick-look interpretation work flow through lithology recognition, reservoir/non-reservoir discrimination, fluid types and contacts, porosity estimation, formation water resistivity, water saturation, net reservoir and net pay
  • Computerised quick look petrophysics
  • Reservoir quality controls and rock typing methods
  • Core calibration of porosity and water saturation
  • Mineral volume methods
  • Shaly sand analysis
  • Interpretation in thin beds
  • Advanced logging toll interpretation techniques

In light of Covid-19 this information is indicative and may be subject to change.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown


More Information about Week Numbers

In light of Covid-19 and the move to blended learning delivery the assessment information advertised for second half-session courses may be subject to change. All updates for second-half session courses will be actioned in advance of the second half-session teaching starting. Please check back regularly for updates.

Summative Assessments

1x two-hour written examination (30%) and continuous assessment (70%).

Resit: 1 two-hour written examination

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.



Course Learning Outcomes


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