Skip to content Skip to navigation


BPSM Scientists and Graduate Students work on a variety of problems in basin and petroleum system modeling. These problems are organized here by research topic and by geographic area. A research topic covers themes both broad and specific in scope that can be applied to many modeling scenarios in different geographic areas. Most of these research topics are placed in their sedimentary basin and petroleum system context in the geographic area section to determine their applicability to other settings. A geographic area is a sedimentary basin or tectonic setting where a research topic is applied to a basin and petroleum system modeling case study.

The Sur Basin (informally called the Partington Basin) is an ~1800 km2, asymmetric, structural basin offshore of the southern part of the central California margin, bounded to the south by the Sa
The Vallecitos Syncline is a westerly structural extension of the western San Joaquin Basin, a prolific oil and gas province in central Californa.
Porcelanite and chert originate from marine diatoms as diatomite, which undergoes diagenetic conversion of amorphous opal (opal-A) to cristobalite and tridymite (opal-CT) and finally quartz.
The Salinas basin is a Cenozoic strike-slip basin in the Coast Ranges of central California.
The Piceance Basin is an asymmetrical sedimentary basin in the northeast part of the Colorado Plateau.
The study area in the Gulf of Mexico is located off the coast of Louisiana in the Ship Shoal and South Timbalier area.
The East Coast Basin (ECB) is a petroliferous Neogene forearc basin located on the eastern margin on the North Island, New Zealand.
The ECB contains five main tectono-s

Second-year Masters student Minh Tran works at the intersection of basin and petroleum system modeling and rock physics, under the guidance of BPSM Principal Scientist Tapan Mukerji.

The North Slope of Alaska is one of the world's largest hydrocarbon-rich provinces and is home to the giant Prudhoe Bay field.
Basin and Petroleum System Modeling covers a large spatial and temporal interval. Many of the input parameters are highly uncertain.
Basin and Petroleum System Modeling (BPSM) covers a large spatial and temporal interval. Many of the input parameters are highly uncertain.

BPSM Scientists Ken Peters and Oliver Schenk, along with graduate student Danica Dralus, built a prototype module in commercially available petroleum system modeling software to determine the depth

The phase transitions from opal-A to opal-CT to quartz plays an important role in hydrocarbon trapping in regions with siliceous deposits, particularly where structural traps are absent.
The geochemical work for this project by graduate student Meng He comprises two components.
Graduate student Tess Menotti is combining traditional basin and petroleum system modeling of the Salinas basin, California, described here, with a geochemical study of the area.
Linking a basin and petroleum system (BPSM) with seismic attributes has many potential applications. Calibrating basin models is crucial to building credible models that honor existing data.
Structural extension and shortening can play a significant role in basin and petroleum system development.
Classically, basin modeling is done with the intention of modeling oil and gas generation and migration for a specific existing basin of interest.

Pore pressure prediction is important for both real-time drilling to optimize field safety conditions, and for paleo-modeling to provide a framework for development of the basin and petroleum syste

Three-dimensional (3D) basin modeling is often over-simplified in tectonically and structurally complex sedimentary basins, neglecting structures that are potentially critical to understanding hydr