3-D Reservoir Characterization of the South Buckeye Field, Dundee Formation (Devonian), Michigan Basin, USA

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Geological and Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. G. Michael Grammer

Second Advisor

Dr. William B. Harrison

Third Advisor

Dr. Dave Barnes


carbonate, sedimentology, reef, reservoir, characterization

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Abstract Only

Restricted to Campus until



Middle Devonian Dundee carbonates are prolific hydrocarbon reservoirs throughout the Michigan Basin that have produced in excess of 375 million barrels of oil from more than 100 fields. The internal variability and detailed facies geometry of the Dundee are not well understood. This high resolution reservoir characterization study defines the complex internal heterogeneities of the South Buckeye field by tying reservoir quality directly to seven primary depositional facies.

The fundamental goal of this study is to evaluate if the geographic distribution of patch reefs can be accurately modeled in Petrel based on core and log data without a tie to 3-D seismic. This study uses geometrical data from multiple modern and ancient depositional analogs. The geographic distribution and internal architecture of patch reefs are defined through the integration of petrophysical and high-density petrographic analyses from subsurface core data.

Based on core, wire-line log analysis, and depositional analogs three end-member interpretations are modeled geostatistically in Petrel and used to define the distribution and scale of the patch reef reservoirs in the South Buckeye field. As with many carbonate reservoirs, a three-dimensional static reservoir model is a critical step in the workflow for efficient hydrocarbon extraction, natural gas storage, and CO2 sequestration, and this study provides insight into the Michigan Basin Dundee patch reefs as well as possibly other Devonian carbonates and reef trends around the world.

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