The new seismic interpretation: Integrating Relative Geologic Time, Structural Geology and 3D seismic for more effective stratigraphic exploration and development

Steven Tobias


Two days

Intended Audience

Intermediate Level


Basic workstation skills for 3D seismic

Detailed Course Description

Over 60 years ago, Harry Wheeler introduced the so-called “Wheeler Diagram”, a powerful tool that shows how various facies are distributed in time and space. In the 1970’s, this venerable tool formed an important part of the new revolution in Sequence Stratigraphy. Recently, advanced AI techniques have been developed that enable oil finders to quickly convert 3D seismic data and logs into data-rich Wheeler diagrams. This breakthrough allows geoscientists to explore volumes of rock in greater detail and as never before.

This course starts with a review of two important new paradigms. The first builds on Wheeler’s work to show why the “Relative Geologic Time” or RGT model takes integrated interpretation to the next level. The second shows how the classic “G&G” approach my many holds us back from true integration, where an “S&S” approach that allows structural geoscientists and stratigraphic scientists to decouple RGT geomodels into structural and stratigraphic workflows in a way that yields superior results. Topics covered include how to build the model more efficiently, conventional and subsalt applications, the need to focus on geobodies rather than maps, breakthrough techniques to study seismic sequences in areas devoid on onlaps, offlaps etc. (typical of syndepositional environments).

Learner Outcomes

  • Construct Relative Geologic Time (RGT) Models from logs and 3D seismic.
  • Interpret and define Seismic Sequences using Wheeler Diagrams, 3D seismic, and logs in an integrated manner.
  • Distinguish between valid and non-valid prospects based on a combination of geobody mapping and an understanding of the environment of deposition through a study of the RGT model.
  • Integrate structural modelling and stratigraphic tools for a much better understanding of sub-salt exploration opportunities and risk.

Instructor Biography

Steven Tobias