N403 Reservoir Sedimentology of Fluvial - Shallow Marine Facies (Isle of Wight, UK)

Course Facts

Course Code:
3 days
Physical Demand:
2.4 Continuing Education Units
24 Professional Development Hours
Certificate Issued Upon Completion


The course will analyse the distribution, architecture, internal characteristics and reservoir  quality of Cretaceous-age sandstone bodies from a range of clastic depositional settings including, fluvial, shelfal and estuarine. Focus will be placed on sedimentological and stratigraphic examination  of the successions, including a range of tidally-influenced facies. Attendees will learn to recognise and interpret a diverse range of shallow marine facies within a basinal framework and consider different scales of heterogeneity.

Duration and Training Method

This is a three-day field course to the southern coast of the Isle of Wight, comprising field examination of depositional systems at both seismic and, more  commonly, sub-seismic, sandstone body scale. The proportion of field time to classroom time is approximately 80:20 and participants will learn via lectures, field- observations, exercises and group discussion.

Participants will learn to:

1. Interpret the sedimentology, stratigraphic architecture and reservoir potential of fluvial and tidal/wave dominated shorelines/shelves.
2. Analyse fluvial channel deposits in terms of channel styles, net to gross variation and associated overbank deposits.
3. Examine the spatial distribution of tidally-influenced sandstone bodies in a basinal framework and assess the nature of intraformational seals, permeability barriers and baffles in the bodies.
4. Consider the different scales of heterogeneity in sandstone reservoirs.
5. Interpret a shallow marine stratigraphic succession in terms of sediment supply and sea level controls.

The geology of the Isle of Wight can braodly be divided into two parts, based upon a north-south division through the island as denoted by the structural feature known as the Isle of Wight Monocline: the north exposes the youngest rocks of the Paleogene, whereas the south exposes the older rocks of the Lower and Upper Cretaceous. The field elements of the course will focus on the Creatceous succession exposed on the south facing cliffs in East and West Wight.


Day 1:

Travel to Isle of Wight

Field location 1: Sandown Bay (East Isle of Wight). Cretaceous succession of tidal, coastal, inner and outer shelf facies; reservoir sandstone units.

Day 2:

Field location 2.  Compton Bay (West Isle of Wight). Cretaceous succession of fluvial channel deposits, tidal sandbars, shallow marine sandstone and mudstone facies in a sequence stratigraphic context.

Field location 3: Shepherds Chine (West Isle of Wight). Barnes High Sandstone (Early Cretaceous): tidal shallow marine sandstone unit, transgressive/regressive.

Day 3:

Field Location 4: Brook Chine (West Isle of Wight). Reservoir sedimentology and heterogeneity of a large (1600m wide) fluvial channel sandstone complex.

Return Travel

Who should attend

Geoscientists who wish to gain insights into the nature of a wide range of reservoir analogue sandstone bodies, with a particular focus on those deposited in a tide-influenced shallow marine and fluvial settings. The course would suit those working in any aspect of exploration, appraisal and field development in fluvial, coastal and shallow marine reservoirs.


Prerequisites and linking courses

There are no prerequisites for this course, but it is a natural extension of Basic Application Level course N155 (Introduction to Clastic Depositional Systems). As a follow-on, participants
may wish to attend courses (at Skilled Application Level) exploring in greater detail deposystems or themes explored during this course, e.g. the fluvial course N108 (Exploration and Geological Model Development in Fluvial Reservoirs) and the field-based reservoir modelling course N386 (Reservoir Model Design). For more information on the diverse range of Nautilus field courses available please visit training.rpsgroup.com

The physical demands for this class are LOW according to the Nautilus field course grading system. The class requires basic fitness levels. The majority of stops are beach locations with walking distances of up to 2 km (1.5 miles). All transport during the class is by coach.

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Gary Nichols