Fracture attribute scaling and connectivity in the Devonian Orcadian Basin with implications for geologically equivalent sub-surface fractured reservoirs
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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- NGI articles 
Original versionSolid Earth (SE). 2020, 11 (6), 2221-2244. 10.5194/se-11-2221-2020
Fracture attribute scaling and connectivity datasets from analogue systems are widely used to inform sub-surface fractured reservoir models in a range of geological settings. However, significant uncertainties are associated with the determination of reliable scaling parameters in surface outcrops. This has limited our ability to upscale key parameters that control fluid flow at reservoir to basin scales. In this study, we present nine 1D-transect (scanline) fault and fracture attribute datasets from Middle Devonian sandstones in Caithness (Scotland) that are used as an onshore analogue for nearby sub-surface reservoirs such as the Clair field, west of Shetland. By taking account of truncation and censoring effects in individual datasets, our multiscale analysis shows a preference for power-law scaling of fracture length over 8 orders of magnitude (104 to 104 m) and kinematic aperture over 4 orders of magnitude (106 to 102 m). Our assessment of the spatial organization (clustering and topology) provides a new basis for up-scaling fracture attributes collected in outcrop- to regional-scale analogues. We show how these relationships may inform knowledge of geologically equivalent sub-surface fractured reservoirs.