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Top 10 Tips for Working in Petrel 

Top 10 Tips for Working in Petrel

The following is of tips and tricks you should know about when working in Petrel. They will allow you to work more efficient, save you time, plus can make you look more professional (which is a huge benefit). They can be used for every version of Petrel from 2009 to 2013 (possibly 2014 too).


1) Know your most used shortcuts
The usage of the keys V, P, S, D and M should be the shortcuts you can dream. They allow you to rotate and pan around (V), P allows you to pick and select data (use right mouse button too). S allows you to target zoom (and set the center of rotation), while D measures distance. M is useful for cross section to Manipulate the plane.
Also understand CTRL-U to center your windo/or viewport around your visualised objects. Also remember CTRL+Z and CTRL+Y to undo and redo in most click intensive processes (seismic interpretation, fault modelling and polygon drawing). Know that X opens the eraser (+ and makes it smaller and bigger) for most processes and E allows you to edit points. Alt+F4 sets your windows to new horizontal tab groups. Go here for a list of Petrel shortcuts.

2) Use F2 to rename objects
To rename objects in your object trees use the F2 key so you don’t have to go into settings.

3) Use Favourites
Nothing is more annoying than having to scroll through your input tree. Move your most used objects to the favourite’s pane and access them easily.

4) Right click on object in the 3D window
Use the picker (P) and right click on object in view to quickly get them selected in the input tree. Also the right click enu will appear. Furthermore, when you have spreadsheets open and click on data points (well tops, checkshots, well-point data) they will also be selected in the spreadsheet. Some process dialogs also allow you to right click on the objects in input fields to select them in the input tree.

5) Find objects with CTRL+F
To find objects use CTRL+F. This function can not be found in any of the menus, so it’s very useful. You can also use studio, but then you have to index your project first.

6) Learn about Workflows as soon as possible
Everything becomes more bearable when using workflows; not only for model updates, but also for renaming objects or generating QC data like isochores and maps. It is too much to explain them here, but be sure to try and learn about them.

7) Use Petrels Unit conversion tool
For any work you might be doing in excel or during other workflows unit conversion are always necessary. You can go to Google and type in your conversion, but some of the more specific units are not recognized. In Petrel you can find a Unit conversion toolbox from the Tools menu with all the units you can dream of!

8) Experiment with drag and drop and CTRL+C and CTRL+Z
Not a lot of people know you can easily copy properties from one grid to the other. Or drag and drop seismic data from one survey to the other. Also Inlines and Xlines can be copied and dragged to other seismic cubes. Not all right click menu’s show copy and paste options, so use the shortcuts instead.

9) Reset layout
When you have lost certain panels in your window setup use reset layout from the system settings dialog to get everything back.

10) Know your calculator statements
Last but not least! Not a lot of people know that you can use functions and surfaces to convert one or two values into another value. Also extracting seismic data along wells is possible.

Some examples below:
Using lineair functions or lookup tables:

Using surfaces as functions with 2 variables: eg. F(A,B)="surface z value" :
property=surface_name(propertyA, propertyB)

Extracting a value from a surface to a property

Seismic to a well log:

Also look through the geometry button in each calculator to extract the satatistics of an object (Mean, Max, Minimum, etc).

Use it for instance to normalize a log:

Or use the position index to get nearby values.

For instance, for grid properties you could use:

Or place a property in a specific K layer.

Also try to experiment with macro’s to run a set of calculations.

Author Message

Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2010 10:06 pm
Posts: 107
Post Re: Top 10 Tips for Working in Petrel
Awesome! Thanks for sharing, there were even some tips i didn't know about, while I've been using with petrel for over 6 years.

The F2 trick for renaming has been something I now know I really missed all that time. Very frustating to rename the object through the settings window.

Thu Nov 27, 2014 6:58 pm
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