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Reservoir Characterization for Mudrock Reservoirs
Rajan Chokshi, PhD

INSTRUCTOR: Stephen A. Sonnenberg, PhD
DISCIPLINE: Geoscience, Engineering, Unconventional Reservoirs
COURSE LENGTH: 3 Days (Classroom) / 6 Half-Day Sessions (Live Online)
CEUS: 2.4


Contact SCA’s Training Department at to schedule an In-House course.

SAMPLE TOPIC FROM THE CLASS: “Exploring for Mudrock Reservoirs: What We Think We Know”

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Geologists, geophysicists, & engineers who are interested in exploring and developing resources in mudrock formations. The course is intended to be an overview of various successful and unsuccessful mudrock systems.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course is an introduction to mudrock resource plays.  A wide range of topics will be covered to familiarize the participant with the important nuances of both successful and unsuccessful mudrock plays. The petroleum system approach will be used.  A key emphasis of this course will be to show the important elements and processes for continuous oil and gas accumulations. The participant will learn screening techniques (check list) which may help identify continuous types of accumulations.


  • What exactly is a mudrock?
  • Understand factors related to tight oil & gas mudrock production
  • Working model for unconventional tight petroleum systems
  • Recognize technologies available for tight reservoirs
  • Determine if a pervasive hydrocarbon exists
  • Determine the type of source rocks present and maturity
  • Use geological and geochemical reconnaissance
  • Mudstone facies
  • Reservoir characterization for Mudrock Reservoirs
  • Mudrock sequence stratigraphy
  • Understand the importance of mechanical stratigraphy
  • Identify matrix porosity and permeability
  • Identify reservoir drive mechanisms
  • Discuss various tools and techniques for reservoir characterization
  • Discuss structural styles associated with mudrocks (e.g., polygonal fault systems)
  • Identify the presence of natural fractures
  • Discuss secondary and tertiary recovery potential in mudrock systems
  • Discuss latest drilling and completion techniques



Successful mudrock plays discussed in this course include Bakken (Williston Basin), Niobrara (Rocky Mountain Region), Vaca Muerta (Neuquén Basin), Eagle Ford (Gulf Coast), Haynesville (Gulf Coast), Greenhorn (Denver Basin), Marcellus (Appalachian Basin).