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Petroleum System Assessment

Basin and Petroleum systems Modeling applications provide new methods, tools and workflows to minimize the petroleum exploration risk.
The basin analysis workbench developed by IFPEN includes a new source rock stratigraphic modeling tool DionisosFlow™ coupled with the TemisFlow™ migration modeling of oil and gas from source rocks to traps in 3D.
A new integrated workflow enabling quantification and use of uncertainty throughout the basin modeling chain is also available thanks to advanced statistical methods provided by CougarFlow™.
These tools are integrated within the OpenFlow™software platform thus providing a complete and unique solution for exploration purpose.

The key benefits developed by IFPEN are the following:

  • A software platform for the whole basin & petroleum systems modeling
  • A new source rock stratigraphic modeling tool
  • A new integrated  workflow  enabling quantification and use of uncertainty throughout the basin modeling chain
  • A bridge between sedimentologists & petroleum system modelers
  • Synergies from cross-disciplinary interaction

Four leading software solutions for evaluating petroleum system potential and reducing exploration risks:

• DionisosFlow™ is a process-based approach (Stratigraphic Forward Model) that simulates sedimentary and tectonic processes controlling basin fill architecture (prediction of source-rock and reservoir distribution) over geological time spans. This modeling process is applicable in clastics, carbonates and mixed environments, from continental to deep water.


Ongoing Research & Innovation items:

  • matching integration: calibration to available well data, calibration to seismic attributes (stratigraphic-to-seismic simulation workflow);
  • sedimentary processes: improve ecological rules to simulate the growth of carbonate systems, organic matter production, degradation and transport (JIP DORS), early diagenesis controls (new concepts/models) including degradation and transformation during the early burial sediments, early diagenesis of carbonates, evaporite modeling;
  • performance : toward a new high performance simulation code to better address large scale simulation.

For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

• TemisFlow™ is a flexible tool for petroleum system modeling including new methods to dynamically simulate the evolution of a sedimentary basin through geological time, assessing generation, expulsion, migration trapping and accumulation processes. This tool can be applied for both classical environments and complex structural settings (faults) with specific migration models adapted to unstructured meshes.


Ongoing Research & Innovation items:

  • uncertainty quantification workflow (input data, sedimentary process parameters) using modern statistical tools (see CougarFlow™);
  • new generation integrated workflow for structural restoration of 2D cross sections whose outputs fulfill the needs of basin modeling in complex geometries (see KronosFlow™);
  • improved gas exploration: biogenic gas generation and migration, dissolution of gases into water, deep CO2 generation and migration, CO2 risk prediction in reservoirs, H2S generation and migration (TSR);
  • improved migration models: Darcy flow in structured and unstructured grids (ArcTem engine, developed on ArcGeoSim™), triphasic fluid flow, Fast Ray tracing simulator (Camel engine, developed on ArcGeoSim™).

For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

KronosFlow™ is a new generation software for the structural restoration of 2D cross sections at basin scale, which outputs fulfill the needs of basin modeling in highly structured and/or faulted geological settings. This tool based on the OpenFlow™ platform generates a 2D consistent mesh continuously deformed over time and fully compatible with TemisFlow™ ArcTem engine. All the deliverables of the ongoing Kronos project are developed in collaboration with industry sponsors. A prototype will be delivered to sponsors prior to the first industrial release, allowing them to embrace and evaluate the new developed methodologies and technologies.
For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

  Kine3D is an advanced structural analysis tool to restore 3D basin and reservoir models in complex areas where seismic data is scarce or of poor quality. Kine3D significantly simplifies and accelerates the 3D restoration process by applying geologic, lithologic and geomechanical parameters to restore models to their undeformed state in both 2D and 3D.
The process validates structural seismic interpretations and geometries with embedded geologic constraints. In addition, geoscientists can make use of SKUA Kine3D multi-platform capabilities to validate subsurface model and assess:
- basin fluid migration thanks to the link with TemisFlow™,
- fracture distribution within the reservoir model witch can be used as constraints within FracaFlow™.
For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

IFPEN also proposes advanced equipment and lab/modeling workflows to improve the multidisciplinary knowledge of the subsurface. Most of data and derived parameters can directly be used in impact studies and to constrain models, additionally to help filling basin and reservoirs models. These approaches are crucial for calibration purpose as well as to improve the predictivity of models.

Rock-Eval 6 equipment is designed to measure richness and maturity of potential source rocks through a pyrolysis process.
IFPEN proposes specific services including:

  • a classical geochemical characterization of source rocks with a simple analytical procedure (crushing of samples followed by the Rock-Eval 6 analyses);
  • a more detailed geochemical characterization of source rocks, for instance running a complete analytical procedure including Rock-Eval 6 analyses on both bulk-rock and isolated kerogen, SARA, GC-FID and organic extractions  followed by an open pyrolysis workflow (kinetics) on selected samples.

Rock-Eval 6 is marketed by Vinci Technologies.


Ongoing Research & Innovation items:
new developments are designed to increase the domain of application of the Rock-Eval technique in the field of source rock characterization:

  • new method of analysis and interpretation for the Rock-Eval 6 device for better assessment of free or sorbed hydrocarbons in unconventional shale plays;
  • quantitative sulfur characterization through evolution of the Rock-Eval method and process.

For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

GeoAnalog modeling is a solution that supports exploration decisions. A data base of structural analog models helps to understand the kinematic of deformation over time of a specific area (in 3D and/or 4D) in complex geological settings, and to enhance analyses, interpretations and recommendations.


GeoAnalog webservice ( is a powerful and handy search engine to find and consult existing structural analog models, with simplified access and monitoring for geoscientists. 
Acquisition of new structural analog models is also possible through advanced services (sandbox experiments with a well understood protocol).
For more information, contact Vincent Richard.


JIPs : Become a sponsor

IFPEN organizes and coordinates JIPs (Joint Industry Projects), collaborative research projects bringing together several industrial partners who jointly fund a program designed to solve a given problem. This formula means that the financial risks can be shared upstream and the research results downstream. This sharing makes it possible to explore avenues that lead to genuine innovations and provides the partners with a real competitive edge by giving them early access to new technologies. IFPEN is coordinating JIPs in partnership with more than 30 national and international operating companies.

- DORS: Dionisos Organic-Rich Sediments - Advanced basin-scale 3D stratigraphic modeling
The objective is to estimate the spatial distribution of the organic matter of source rock and oil and gas shales, and to predict its quality. The JIP DORS aims at developing, testing and calibrating 3 modules of organic matter production/degradation (marine, lacustrine, terrestrial) coupled to the stratigraphic forward model. The deliverables consist in prototype plug-ins implemented in DionisosFlow™. Workshops with all DORS partners are organized every 6 months. These workshops are very interactive: all partners discuss the results obtained and share their experience. Partners are required to join for the 3 years.
For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

- RAMPS : Resource Assessment of the Montney Petroleum System
 softwares, to predict both nature and quantity of hydrocarbon resources within the Montney-Doig unconventional system in the West Canadian Sedimentary Basin.
Program is currently under finalization process with potential partners.
For more information, contact Vincent Richard.

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