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Recent advances in sedimentology have made it possible to reconstruct and identify closely associated environments. Tables of environmental criteria for deltaic, shoreline, and marine environments are based upon modern analogues. Preliminary log and sample data generally only suggest environmental interpretations. Characteristics of channeling, marine wave and current patterns, and shoreline processes are identifiable only with a range of data from logging programs, cores, and core slices.
Stratigraphic study of genetic depositional units provides the basis for stratigraphic exploration. The areal and vertical patterns of sedimentary units are closely related and consequently patterns of reservoirs, source beds, and trapping lithologies can be determined. These are related to local structure, and oil and gas trend plays can be recognized and developed on the basis of this type of information.
Exploration for stratigraphic traps requires an understanding of the genesis of the target reservoir unit. Environmental interpretations utilizing incorrect depositional models, incomplete studies of modern examples, or the absence of a multiple approach will lead to incorrect interpretations.
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