Deep expertise in fractured carbonate reservoirs, Kurdistan and the Zagros

For over twenty years, RPS has delivered integrated services to our clients through their exploration and production challenges in the geologically complex hydrocarbon plays of Kurdistan and the Zagros region of the Middle East.

Over 60% of global conventional hydrocarbons are hosted by carbonate reservoirs. Many of these reservoirs are naturally fractured, posing complex technical challenges for exploration and production.

Carbonate reservoirs are typically highly heterogeneous at scales from a few microns to kilometres. This heterogeneity results from an interplay of depositional setting, sediment character and post-depositional diagenetic processes. Fracturing adds an additional facet to an already complex problem. In the Zagros region, the complex geological history means it is critical to understand thrust tectonics and the resulting fault and fracture patterns for effective characterisation of dynamic reservoir behaviour. Quantification of porosity and, by extension, in-place hydrocarbon volume in fractured carbonates poses a singular geological challenge and, while fracturing can improve permeability and reservoir performance, it also introduces additional risks (e.g. gas/water coning).

Successful exploration, robust evaluation and effective field development require the integration of geology, geophysics, stratigraphy, sedimentology and reservoir engineering.


Our resource evaluations are conducted by teams of skilled geoscientists, reservoir engineers and economists. These specialists have worked on multiple fields and reservoirs in the region, providing our clients with a robust independent appraisal of their assets.

Detailed reservoir characterisation is crucial to the subsurface interpretation of heterogeneous, structurally complex fields. Our specialist technical teams apply skills in sedimentology, petrography and biostratigraphy to enable our clients to make informed decisions on exploration and development projects. Our petrophysicists routinely work with core analysis and wireline logs as well as specialist techniques for characterising fractures like image logs and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance.

Effective field development planning in fractured carbonate reservoirs requires insight into how the rock matrix and fractures interact to generate complex fluid flow pathways. Fracturing can enhance production but also increase the risk of gas/water breakthrough, ultimately impacting well performance and recovery. Our engineers’ deep expertise extends from resource evaluation to forecasting and production strategy.

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James Hodson, Geoscientist at RPS

James Hodson

Geoscientist T: +44 1483 746 553 Email
Woking | UK

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