Petroleum Engineering Events

Upcoming Events

  • PE Distinguished Seminar Series: Dr. Rick Sarg
    Friday, November 22

    Organic-Rich Lacustrine Rocks – The Green River Formation, Colorado and the Pre-Salt of Brazil – A Story of Beaches, Microbes, and Chemical Precipitates

  • Distinguished Seminar Series: Organic-Rich Lacustrine Rocks – The Green River Formation, Colorado/Utah and the Pre-Salt of Brazil – A Story of Beaches, Microbes, and Chemical Precipitates
    Friday, November 22

    Dr. Rick Sarg

    Dept. of Geology & Geol. Engineering, Colorado School of Mines

    November 22 @ 9:30 am-11:30 am, MZ 108

    Carbonate deposits in ancient lake systems are products of the biotic and chemical environments in these lakes and can comprise significant hydrocarbon reservoirs within organic-rich lacustrine systems. The Green River (Eocene) carbonates are excellent process analogues for the pre-Salt reservoirs (Lower Cretaceous) in the South Atlantic region. Despite being deposited in very different tectonic regimes – post-orogenic foreland (Green River) and syn-rift (South Atlantic), the lake depositional processes and chemical controls on lake carbonates are similar. The Green River Formation of Colorado, and Utah provides insight into the South Atlantic lake basins, the most significant new hydrocarbon province discovered in the last decade and one that represents 50% of Brazil’s oil and gas reserves and makes then a net oil exporter.

    Both the Green River and the South Atlantic lakes are organic-rich, alkaline lakes with pH values thought to be as high as 10-12. Co-variance of C and O stable isotopes in the Green River and lack of spring deposits (i.e., tufa and travertine) indicates a closed lake system dominated by surface inflow. The Green River lake is rich in Na, Ca, Mg, and HCO3 resulting in precipitation of nahcolite, trona, and calcite and early replacement dolomite. The South Atlantic rift lakes are thought to be closed systems as well, and are rich in Ca, Mg and Si resulting in formation of stevensite, calcite spherulites, and replacement dolomite. The formation of dolomite in both lake systems contributes to enhanced reservoir quality, both in conventional and unconventional reservoirs.

    Carbonate sedimentary environments common to both lake systems include littoral bioclastic coquinas, ooid grainstones, and microbial deposits. The Green River shoreline deposits range from dolomitic intraclastic packstone to oolitic and ostracod grainstones deposited in meter-scale shallowing upward cycles. The South Atlantic shorelines are characterized by m to 10’s of m thick, molluscan lime rudstones and grainstones also deposited in shallowing upward cycles. Interparticle porosity dominates in both lake shorelines. Microbial deposits are common in both systems and comprise biostromes and bioherms. The Green River microbial-rich units are characterized by 1-3 m thick, deepening upward cycles that commonly begin with shallow water intraclastic rudstone/grainstone and/or oolitic wackestones to grainstones. These are overlain by stromatolites and thrombolites, and capped by fine-grained stromatolites that transition upward into oil shale. Intra-particle, interparticle, fenestral, and vuggy pore types are common in microbial and associated deposits resulting in excellent reservoir quality. Dolomudstones in lakeshore and profundal organic-rich environments contain microporosity.

    South Atlantic carbonates, in contrast to Green River carbonates, include meters to 10’s of m thick dolomitic spherulitic grainstones. Spherulitic deposits have high porosity and permeability and are excellent reservoirs. Porosity is pseudo-fenestral and is interpreted to result from stevensite dissolution. In addition, thick spring deposits are comprised of porous lithoclastic breccias with excellent porosity.


    Dr. J. Frederick ‘Rick’ Sarg received his Ph.D. (1976) in Carbonate Sedimentology and Stratigraphy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, following M.S. (1971) and B.S. (1969) degrees in Geology from the University of Pittsburgh. He has had extensive petroleum exploration and production experience in research, supervisory, and operational assignments with Exxon and Mobil, with Mobil Technology Company (1992-99) where he attained the position of Research Scientist, and with ExxonMobil Exploration Co. (2000-05), where he achieved the position of Lead Stratigrapher. Rick was a member of the exploration research group at Exxon that developed sequence stratigraphy, where he was responsible for developing carbonate sequence concepts. He has worldwide experience in integrated seismic-well-outcrop interpretation of siliciclastic and carbonate sequences, and has authored or co-authored 50 papers on stratigraphy and carbonates. In August of 2006, Rick joined the Colorado School of Mines as a Research Professor in the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering. Rick’s current projects at CSM include low-permeability, fractured carbonate mudrocks; and the lacustrine carbonates and stratigraphy of the Green River Formation in Colorado and Utah. Rick served as President of the Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM) (2004-05), and since 2012, the President of the SEPM Foundation. Rick was awarded the 2013 Robert R. Berg Outstanding Research Award by the AAPG.

    Sarg Distinguished Seminar

  • Chevron Short Course Series: Data Analytics
    Friday, January 24

    Presented by Naser Erwemi, Nobel Energy. Houston, Texas

        Function: Enhance Data Analysis Skills

    • Learn the essentials and understand the components and functionalities of TIBOC Spotfire X
    • Load, explore, analyze oil and gas production Data Sets Via Spotfire X platform
    • Build visualizations within the application to answer business questions
    • Explore different Spotfire chart types
    • Publishing and reporting

    This course is available for PE Seniors only.

    To sign-up or for more information, please contact Rachel McDonald:

  • PE Distinguished Seminar Series: Osman Apaydin
    Friday, January 31


  • Chevron Short Course Series: Reservoir Management
    Friday, February 21

    Presented by Zack Warren and Michael Hirsch, Great Western Oil and Gas

    • Mix of lecture and practical applications of reservoir management. Topics to include
    • PDP decline curve analysis for producing tight oil wells
    • Type well analysis for undeveloped tight oil wells
    • Practical rate-transient analysis (PI-cum) for producing tight oil wells
    • Practice using software such as Spotfire, (ARIES and Harmony were also requested)

    This course is available for PE Seniors only.

    To sign-up or for more information, please contact Rachel McDonald:

  • Chevron Short Course Series: Reliability Engineering
    Friday, March 20

    Presented by: Miller Newlon, Aera Energy LLC.

    This course is available for PE Seniors only.

    To sign-up or for more information, please contact Rachel McDonald:

Materials from Prior Events

Dr. Bill Eustes – Drilling Research Opportunities

SPE Distinguished Lecturer Will Fleckenstein Shale Development – Does cheap energy really mean flaming tap water?

Climate Change Forum

Dag Nummedal, Engineering Solutions to Global Warming

Xerxes Steirer, Sustainability

Andy Walker, Solar Energy

Chuck Wilson, Air and Heat

CSM Course and Minors