Matsumoto, M., Japan Natl. Oil Corp. (Japan)


An advanced graphic post-processing system has been developed. The principal feature of this system is an three-dimensional (3D) expression of the whole reservoir phenomena as engineering animations. This system can show the distribution of parameters of the reservoir simulations by forming colored-transparent iso-value surfaces in the 3D space and the dynamic changes of the parameters by moving the surfaces smoothly with interpolation of the data between calculated time steps. Furthermore, it can create a contour map on an arbitrary cross section of the reservoir. The system is applicable to presentation and instruction as well as to result evaluation.


For many years, engineers have felt frustrated when huge volumes of computer printouts and XY plotted contours are piled on their desks as a product of sophisticated 3D simulations. It was tough work for engineers to assemble these stationary sources into a series of 3D dynamic pictures and to gain an engineering insight into them. Such cumbersome access to the output of 3D reservoir simulations even causes a certain number of engineers to refrain from freely using this software. Almost the same can be said of preparing input data for 3D reservoir simulation. We found a solution for this annoyance in computer graphics technology. Recently the technology of computer graphics has rapidly progressed year after year, keeping pace with the capabilities of computers, e.g. super computers, engineering workstations, and PCs. The technology is applied not only to SFX movies like "GHOSTBUSTERS" or computer graphic art, but also to the medical field, computer mapping systems, studies of molecular structures, mechanical design, or other engineering/scientific fields.

Thereupon, we applied the newest technology to reservoir engineering and are trying to establish a computer aided reservoir engineering (CARE) system called CARES to break through the above problems and to advance reservoir engineering. By present, the post processing part of CARES was completed, and we introduce it here. A main feature of the system is the design of an innovative 3D engineering animation of the reservoir phenomena. It presents to engineers a dynamic series of parameter distribution by displaying colored-transparent iso-value surfaces in 3D mode and the smooth movement of those surfaces with time stop advance. Fluid movement in a reservoir is demonstrated by a video movie as well as colored fluids which flow through a transparent core holder packed with glass beads. It also creates a variety of contours and zoom-ups of ROI (region of interests) on an arbitrary cross section of a remainder of a reservoir, just like a CT scans a skull in any direction. In addition, the system also supports an instant 2D animation system and conventional graphic tools. Development of this post-processing system will drastically improve the presentation of complex reservoir simulation output and make more common use of reservoir simulation.


The hardware configuration of CARES consists of three parts, which are shown in Figure 1. The first is two units of engineering workstations (apollo DN590T) which are kernels to this system. The second is a 3D full color animation system (SIG monolith), attached to the multi bus and the RS232C port of one of the workstations. The third one is a host computer (IBM 3081 KX3) which is connected to the workstations by a high speed local area network (KNET). The workstations are connected to each other by a token ring network (DOMAIN NET). Engineering workstations integrate super-mini computer capability with local area networking, raster graphics capabilities and sophisticated man-machine interface at a cost appropriate to engineering and graphic applications.

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