Completed Study
LIDAR Survey of Middle Jurassic Outcrops of the Tuwaiq Mountain Limestone
The Tuwaiq Escarpment is approximately 600 m high and includes a complete Middle Jurassic section.

The Arab-D (Upper Jurassic) unit of the Riyadh Group makes up one of the largest petroleum reservoirs in the world. Bureau and Saudi Aramco researchers conducted a high-resolution LIDAR survey of Middle Jurassic outcrops of the Tuwaiq Mountain limestone along the Tuwaiq Mountain Escarpment near the city of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This study was a first step towards building a quantitative 3-D geologic model for use as an analog to the lower Arab-D reservoir. Outcrop analogs like this one are critical to understanding reservoir performance on the flow-unit scale (1 to 30 meters). Although seismic data allow geologists to gain information about large-scale reservoir compartmentalization (>30 meters), flow-unit scale reservoir parameters are far below seismic imaging capability and inter-well spacing.

High-precision laser scans were used as a template upon which stratigraphic interpretation were made allowing researchers to characterize sub-seismic, flow-unit scale reservoir properties of Jurassic bioherms in an effort to better understand optimum production techniques of this enormous reservoir.

For more information, please contact Charles Kerans, principal investigator. Telephone 512-471-1368; e-mail