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Confocal microscopy of fluid inclusions reveals fluid-pressure histories of sediments and an unexpected origin of gas condensate

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Andrew Aplin, Professor Stephen Larter, Michael Bigge


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We present two examples of how fluid inclusion data can be used to determine geologic pressure histories and to quantify the compositional evolution of petroleum in oil reservoirs. Volumetric liquid:vapor ratios generated with a confocal laser scanning microscope are used along with pressure-vapor-temperature (P-V-T) modeling software to estimate the composition, P-T phase envelope, and isochore of single petroleum inclusions in the North Sea's Judy and Alwyn fields. In both cases, the gas condensates currently in the reservoirs formed by the emplacement of gas into preexisting oil accumulations. Pressure histories of individual units in each field are also revealed, providing the kind of data needed to determine the permeability and fluid flow histories of sedimentary basins.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Aplin AC, Larter SR, Bigge MA, Macleod G, Swarbrick RE, Grunberger D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Geology

Year: 2000

Volume: 28

Issue: 11

Pages: 1047-1050

ISSN (print): 0534-0101

ISSN (electronic):