Field Study-Heavy Oil Resources - HOFS

Discipline: Integrated - Heavy Oil
Level: Basic
Instructors who teach this course:
  • Dr. Gary Massingill


  • About the course
  • Designed For
  • You will learn
  • Course Content
About the course
This course is geologically and technically focused but instructed in such a manner that all disciplines and experience levels will understand. Mining and in-situ production of bitumen from the Athabasca oil sand region is currently a major contributor to the world's oil production. These technologies are reasonably recent commercial applications and the future levels of production face uncertainty because of highly debated environmental challenges. The field course takes the participant to the rock; explaining complex relationships and issues emanating from the depositional and structural framework.
Designed For
Anyone of any discipline who wants a hands-on understanding of the Athabasca Oil Sands.
You will learn
  • How to understand the depositional and stratigraphic framework of the McMurray Formation
  • How to understand the structural setting and relationships of timing, emplacement and preservation of Alberta's bitumen/heavy oil resource
  • The complex lithologic heterogeneities of the McMurray and their effect on mining and in-situ production
  • To appreciate the challenges and progress of environmental preservation efforts for the development and production of Alberta's bitumen resource
Course Content
  • Overview of the geology, history and development of Canada oil sands
  • McMurray oil sand stratigraphy
  • Depositional details of the McMurray Formation
  • Overview of structural evolution and bitumen resources
  • Oil sand mining methodology
  • Environmental challenges for Alberta's bitumen resources
  • Current status and future plans for reclamation mining activities