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Structural Validation, Modeling And Restoration
Tectonics of Rift Systems and Deltaic Margin


February 24 - 28, 2019

Instructor : Catalina Luneburg, Ph.D.


Geologists, Geophysicists, Explorationists, Supervisors and Managers.


Restoration and balancing techniques are critical for the validation and quality of structural interpretations as well as the unraveling of the tectonic history of a region. In this course participants will learn the concepts of restoration and balancing through practical examples and regional analyses. The course focusses on extensional tectonic settings studying the architecture and development of rifts to passive margins including strike-slip systems, deltaic margins, basin inversion and salt basins. Extensional structures such as normal fault systems, growth faults, linked fault systems and ramp structures are restored using balancing techniques such as fault prediction and kinematic restorations.


Day 1 Concepts of structural validation and restoration
  • Overview and applications of structural validation and balancing in exploration workflows
  • Structural restoration and balancing basic concepts
  • Structural Modeling techniques: Time-step restorations, backstripping and forward modeling
  • 2D and 3D restorations and modeling
  • Rock mechanical properties, stress/strain and rheology, mechanical stratigraphy
  • Restoration algorithms: flexural slip, vertical/oblique shear, area balancing, rigid block rotations, trishear and fault propagation

Day 2 Extensional tectonic settings - from rifting to passive margins
  • Overview of structural styles in extensional settings
  • Thin-skinned and thick-skinned extensional tectonics
  • Tectonic framework and evolution of rift basins and passive margins
  • Mantle exhumation models
  • Mechanical stretching models: McKenzie, Wernicke etc

Day 3 Restoration and balancing of extensional structures
  • Extensional structures: normal faults, growth faults, fault linkages and fault ramps
  • Extensional HC traps
  • Restoration techniques and algorithms in extensional settings: block rotation, vertical/oblique shear etc
  • Fault prediction techniques using hanging wall geometries and depth to detachment
  • Back stripping workflows and effects of syntectonic sedimentation, compaction, and isostasy

Day 4 Extensional basins including deltas, pull-a-parts and salt basins
  • Tectonics of deltaic margins and gravity-driven tectonics
  • Strike-slip tectonics and extensional pull-a-part basins
  • Basin inversion
  • Salt tectonics in rifting and passive margins
  • Autochthonousand allochthonous salt structures
  • Restoration and balancing of extensional salt-involved structures

Day 5, Review and Hands on Certificates.


First day will be held at Holiday Inn maadi (formerly Sofitel Hotel), in Cairo. The participants will fly the next day to Hurghada. The course will be continued in Hurghada.


Inclusive of refreshment and lunch in the Sofitel Hotel. Air Ticket Cairo/Hurghada/return and accommodation in Hurghada.


Dr. Catalina Luneburg is Structural Geologist with a unique skill set based on a solid scientific/academic background combined with industry experience and geomodeling proficiency.

Currently, she is the owner and director of TerraEx Group LLC, in Canada, a customized consulting and training service for the energy industry focusing on Structural Geology/Tectonics. Previously, Luneburg was a Product Manager and Senior Scientist at Landmark/Halliburton developing geomodelling workflows as well as managing and designing software applications such as LithoTect and DecisionSpace. She has also held positions with GeoLogic Systems and Midland Valley, focusing on structural restorations and modeling. Preceding her industry career, she spent many years in academic teaching and research.

As a Structural Geologist Luneburg is a recognized expert in the validation of a variety of basins and petroleum systems worldwide, applying best practices and innovative structural modeling and restoration techniques. Her areas of expertise include geologic interpretation and validation, Structural Geology modeling, cross section balancing and 2D/3D time-step restorations as well as HC reserve estimates, 3D framework building and fracture prediction analyses.

Luneburg holds a doctorate in Natural Sciences from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, Switzerland, and a master's degree and bachelor's degree in Geology from the Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich, Germany.

She has published extensively including several books, and has authored a number of patents. In addition, she has convened conferences and led numerous field trips and workshops. She is fluent in English, German, and Spanish, and proficient in French and Italian.