David L. LePain

David L. LePain

Chief, Energy Resources Section

  • Position:

    Petroleum Geologist, Energy Resources
  • Address:

    3354 College Road Fairbanks, AK 99709-3707
  • Phone:

    (907)451-5085
  • Fax:

    (907)451-5050
  • Email:

    david.lepain@alaska.gov

Education and/or Training

Ph.D. 1993, University of Alaska Fairbanks (Geology)
M.S. 1987, Wright State University, Dayton, OH (Geology)
B.S. with distinction, 1984, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI (Geology)

Projects and/or Research Interests

As the Chief of the Energy Resources Section, I supervise a group of five full-time geologists and help set the section's applied energy-related research priorities. In addition to my role as Section Chief, I am a process-oriented clastic sedimentologist with expertise in a wide range of settings, including fluvial, deltaic, glacial-marine, storm-influenced shelf, and deepwater depositional systems. I am particularly interested in the integration of surface and subsurface (core) data sets for use in reconstructing depositional systems in a sequence stratigraphic framework, with the ultimate goal of predicting reservoir potential. I routinely work with clastic petrologists to understand reservoir quality in a depositional systems context.

My work in Alaska has focused on the North Slope, including the northeastern Brooks Range (ANWR), Cook Inlet basin, and several interior sedimentary basins, including the Susitna, Holitna, and Yukon Flats. I have also collaborated on a project focusing on building a depositional model of a latest Ordovician (Hirnantian) glacigenic succession in the Middle East. I am currently working on the following projects:

  • Sedimentology and stratigraphy of the Tuxedni Group (Middle Jurassic), lower Cook Inlet
  • Process-response sedimentology of mass-transport deposits in the Pomeroy Arkose Member, Naknek Formation, lower Cook Inlet
  • Sedimentology and reservoir potential of the Nanushuk Formation (Albian-Cenomanian) in the western and central North Slope

Professional Experience

2014-Present, Petroleum Geologist, Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, Fairbanks, AK
2012-2013, Geological Specialist, EXPEC ARC, Saudi Aramco, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
2006-2011, Geologist, Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, Fairbanks, AK
2003-2006, Geologist, Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey, Madison, WI
1998-2003, Geologist, Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, Fairbanks, AK

Selected Professional Activities

AFFILIATIONS
Member, American Association of Petroleum Geologist
Member, Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM)
Member, Alaska Geological Society

CORE WORKSHOPS
LePain, D.L., Decker, P.L., Helmold, K.P, and Wartes, M.A., 2017, Brookian topset core workshop: Depositional setting and potential reservoir facies in the Albian-Cenomanian Nanushuk Formation: May 24, Alaska Geologic Materials Center, Anchorage, Alaska. [Workshop organizer]
Garrard, D., Helmold, K.P., Decker, P.L., Wilson, G., LePain, D.L., Houseknecht, D., and Papp, K., Core Workshop: Reservoir potential of the western North Slope: Pacific Section Meeting, May 6, 2011, American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Anchorage, Alaska. [Workshop contributor]

FIELD TRIP LEADERSHIP
2016, Field trip co-leader, Sedimentology and reservoir quality of the Beluga and Sterling Formations in outcrop analogues, Kenai Peninsula, Cook Inlet, Alaska (PSAAPG)
2011, Field trip co-leader, Sedimentology and reservoir quality of the Beluga and Sterling Formations in outcrop analogues, Kenai Peninsula, Cook Inlet, Alaska (PSAAPG)

Selected Publications

  • LePain, D.L., Helmold, K.P., Gillis, R.J., Reger, R.D., and Swenson, R.F., 2017, Field trip guide: Sedimentology, reservoir quality, and tectonic setting of late Miocene-early Pliocene gas-bearing formations, upper Cook Inlet, Alaska.: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Miscellaneous Publication 161, 40 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/29713
  • LePain, D.L., and Stanley, R.G., 2017, Reconnaissance sedimentology of selected Tertiary exposures in the upland region bordering the Yukon Flats basin, east-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-6, 14 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/29700
  • LePain, D.L., and Montayne, Simone, 2017, Core fragment descriptions, Exxon core holes, uplands bordering Yukon Flats basin, east-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Raw Data File 2016-4, 2 p., 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/29576
  • LePain, D.L., 2016, Stratigraphic and reservoir quality studies of continuous core from the Wainwright #1 coalbed methane test well, Wainwright, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2016-3, 58 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/29652
  • Decker, P.L., and LePain, D.L., 2016, Subsurface relationships of Albian-Cenomanian shallow marine to nonmarine topsets of the Nanushuk Formation, northwestern NPRA, northern Alaska, in LePain, D.L., Stratigraphic and reservoir quality studies of continuous core from the Wainwright #1 coalbed methane test well, Wainwright, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2016-3-1, p. 1-3, 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/29655
  • LePain, D.L., and Decker, P.L., 2016, Lithofacies analysis of the Wainwright #1 continuous core, western Arctic Slope, Alaska: Transition from lower to upper delta plain environments in the Albian-Cenomanian Nanushuk Formation, in LePain, D.L., Stratigraphic and reservoir quality studies of continuous core from the Wainwright #1 coalbed methane test well, Wainwright, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2016-3-2, p. 5-35, 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/29656
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., and Helmold, K.P., 2016, Nonmarine facies in the Late Triassic(?) to Early Jurassic Horn Mountain Tuff Member of the Talkeetna Formation, Horn Mountain, lower Cook Inlet basin, Alaska, in Herriott, T.M., ed., Petroleum-related geologic studies in lower Cook Inlet during 2015, Iniskin-Tuxedni region, south-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-1-2, p. 9-20. http://doi.org/10.14509/29535
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., and Helmold, K.P., 2016, Reconnaissance stratigraphy of the Red Glacier Formation (Middle Jurassic) near Hungryman Creek, Cook Inlet basin, Alaska, in Herriott, T.M., ed., Petroleum-related geologic studies in lower Cook Inlet during 2015, Iniskin-Tuxedni region, south-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-1-3, p. 21-31. http://doi.org/10.14509/29536
  • Helmold, K.P., LePain, D.L., and Stanley, R.G., 2016, Sedimentary petrology and reservoir quality of the Middle Jurassic Red Glacier Formation, Cook Inlet forearc basin: Initial impressions, in Herriott, T.M., ed., Petroleum-related geologic studies in lower Cook Inlet during 2015, Iniskin-Tuxedni region, south-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-1-4, p. 33-37. http://doi.org/10.14509/29537
  • LePain, D.L., and Kirkham, Russell, 2015, Rock-eval pyrolysis, vitrinite reflectance, and kerogen microscopy results from Miocene carbonaceous mudstones and coals in outcrop, McGrath Quadrangle, southwestern Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2015-3, 60 p., 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/29406
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., Helmold, K.P., and Shellenbaum, D.P., 2014, Geologic framework and petroleum systems of Cook Inlet basin, south-central Alaska, in Hite, D.M. and Stone, D.M., ed., Oil and gas fields of the Cook Inlet basin, Alaska: AAPG Memoir, 104, p. 37-116.
  • Helmold, K.P., LePain, D.L., Wilson, M.D., and Peterson, C.S., 2013, Petrology and reservoir potential of Tertiary and Mesozoic sandstones, Cook Inlet, Alaska: A preliminary analysis of outcrop samples collected during 2007-2010 field seasons: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2013-5, 34 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/25035
  • Gillis, R.J., Stanley, R.G., LePain, D.L., Mauel, D.J., Herriott, T.M., Helmold, K.P., Peterson, C.S., Wartes, M.A., and Shellenbaum, D.P., 2013, Status of a reconnaissance field study of the Susitna basin, 2011: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2013-4, 8 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/25015
  • Stanley, R.G., Herriott, T.M., LePain, D.L., Helmold, K.P., and Peterson, C.S., 2013, Reconnaissance studies of potential petroleum source rocks in the Middle Jurassic Tuxedni Group near Red Glacier, eastern slope of Iliamna Volcano, in Gillis, R.J., ed., Overview of 2012 field studies: Upper Alaska Peninsula and west side of lower Cook Inlet, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2013-1B, p. 5-9. http://doi.org/10.14509/24845
  • LePain, D.L., 2012, Summary of fossil fuel and geothermal resource potential in the Lower Yukon-Kuskokwim energy region, in Swenson, R.F., Wartes, M.A., LePain, D.L., and Clough, J.G., Fossil fuel and geothermal energy sources for local use in Alaska: Summary of available information: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Special Report 66G, p. 63-72. http://doi.org/10.14509/24430
  • LePain, D.L., and Wartes, M.A., 2012, Summary of fossil fuel and geothermal resource potential in the Yukon-Koyukuk/Upper Tanana energy region, in Swenson, R.F., Wartes, M.A., LePain, D.L., and Clough, J.G., Fossil fuel and geothermal energy sources for local use in Alaska: Summary of available information: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Special Report 66L, p. 123-136. http://doi.org/10.14509/24435
  • LePain, D.L., Lillis, P.G., Helmold, K.P., and Stanley, R.G., 2012, Migrated hydrocarbons in exposure of Maastrichtian nonmarine strata near Saddle Mountain, lower Cook Inlet, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2012-1, 13 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/23943
  • Wartes, M.A., Wallace, W.K., Loveland, A.M., Gillis, R.J., Decker, P.L., Reifenstuhl, R.R., Delaney, P.R., LePain, D.L., and Carson, E.C., 2011, Geologic map of the Kavik River area, northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2011-3A, 14 p., 1 sheet, scale 1:63,360. http://doi.org/10.14509/22602
  • LePain, D.L., McCarthy, P.J., and Kirkham, Russell, 2009, Sedimentology and sequence stratigraphy of the middle Albian-Cenomanian Nanushuk Formation in outcrop, central North Slope, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Report of Investigation 2009-1 v. 2, 76 p., 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/19761
  • LePain, D.L., Wartes, M.A., McCarthy, P.J., Stanley, R.G., Silliphant, L.J., Peterson, Shaun, Shellenbaum, D.P., Helmold, K.P., Decker, P.L., Mongrain, Jacob, and Gillis, R.J., 2009, Facies associations, sand body geometry, and depositional systems in Late Oligocene-Pliocene Strata, southern Kenai Peninsula, Cook Inlet, Alaska: Report on progress during the 2006-07 field season, in LePain, D.L., ed., Preliminary results of recent geologic investigations in the Homer-Kachemak Bay area, Cook Inlet basin: Progress during the 2006-2007 field season: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2009-8A, p. 1-97. http://doi.org/10.14509/20162
  • Houseknecht, D.W., LePain, D.L., Decker, P.L., and Schenk, C.J., 2009, Lower Cretaceous clinoforms in Arctic Alaska: Core Workshop: AAPG Annual Meeting Short Course, U.S. Geological Survey Core Research Center, Lakewood, CO, 95 p.
  • LePain, D.L., Decker, P.L., and Wartes, M.A., 2008, Measured sections and preliminary interpretations of the Nanushuk Formation exposed along the Colville River near the confluences with the Awuna and Killik rivers, in Wartes, M.A., and Decker, P.L., eds., Preliminary results of recent geologic field investigations in the Brooks Range Foothills and North Slope, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2008-1D, p. 41-45, 4 sheets. http://doi.org/10.14509/16088
  • LePain, D.L., Kirkham, Russell, Gillis, R.J., and Mongrain, Jacob, 2008, Turonian-Campanian strata east of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline corridor, North Slope foothills, Alaska: Progress during the 2001-02 and 2007 field seasons, in Wartes, M.A., and Decker, P.L., eds., Preliminary results of recent geologic field investigations in the Brooks Range Foothills and North Slope, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2008-1G, p. 85-134. http://doi.org/10.14509/16090
  • Evans, T.J., Cordue, W.S., and LePain, D.L., 2007, Preliminary geology of the buried bedrock surface, Pierce County, Wisconsin: Wisconsin Geological & Natural History Survey, Open-File Report 2007-08, 1 sheet, scale 1:100,000.
  • LePain, D.L., 2006, Preliminary geologic map of the buried bedrock surface of St. Croix County, Wisconsin: Wisconsin Geological & Natural History Survey, Open-File Report 2006-04, 1 sheet, scale 1:100,000.
  • LePain, D.L., Blodgett, R.B., and Clough, J.G., 2003, Sedimentology and hydrocarbon source rock potential of Miocene-Oligocene strata, McGrath Quadrangle: An outcrop analog for the Holitna basin: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2002-5, 75 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/2870
  • LePain, D.L., and Kirkham, Russell, 2001, Potential reservoir facies in the Nanushuk Formation (Albian-Cenomanian), central North Slope, Alaska: Examples from outcrop and core, in D. W. Houseknecht, ed., NPRA core workshop: Petroleum plays and systems in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska: SEPM Core Workshop 21, p. 19-36.
  • LePain, D.L., Adams, K.E., and Mull, C.G., 2000, Measured section and interpretation of the Tingmerkpuk sandstone (Neocomian), northwestern De Long Mountains, western Arctic Slope, Alaska, in Pinney, D.S., and Davis, P.K., eds., Short Notes on Alaska Geology 1999: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Professional Report 119D, p. 45-62. http://doi.org/10.14509/2686
  • LePain, D.L., Blodgett, R.B., Clough, J.G., Ryherd, T.J., and Smith, T.N., 2000, Generalized stratigraphy and petroleum potential of the Holitna region, southwest Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2000-1, 34 p., 1 sheet, scale 1:250,000. http://doi.org/10.14509/2665
  • LePain, D.L., 1998, Paleotopographic control on deposition of the Lower Kayak Shale, northern Franklin Mountains, Brooks Range, Alaska, in Clough, J.G., and Larson, Frank, eds., Short notes on Alaska geology 1997: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Professional Report 118F, p. 71-85. http://doi.org/10.14509/2333
  • LePain, D.L., Crowder, R.K., and Wallace, W.K., 1994, Early Carboniferous transgression on a passive continental margin: Deposition of the Kekiktuk Conglomerate, northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska: AAPG Bulletin, v. 78, no. 5, p. 679-699.
  • LePain, D.L., 1993, Transgressive sedimentation in rift-flank region: Deposition of the Endicott group (early Carboniferous), northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska: University of Alaska Fairbanks, Ph.D. dissertation, 325 p., illust., maps.

Selected Presentations

  • LePain, D.L., Helmold, K.P., Wartes, M.A., and Decker, P.L., 2017, Reservoir potential of the Nanushuk Formation (Albian-Cenomanian), central North Slope, Alaska: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Pacific Section Annual Meeting, Anchorage, Alaska, 21-24 May.
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., Helmold, K.P., and Shellenbaum, D.P., 2014, Geologic framework of Cook Inlet basin, south-central Alaska: The depositional systems perspective (Keynote): Alaska Geological Society, Annual Technical Conference Abstracts, p. 9.
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., Helmold, K.P., Peterson, C.S., Gillis, R.J., Wartes, M.A., and Herriott, T.M., 2011, Deposition of Paleocene(?)-Eocene West Foreland Formation, northwest margin Cook Inlet basin: Record of coeval faulting and explosive volcanism [abs.]: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Pacific Section Annual Meeting, Anchorage, Alaska, 6-14 May, p. 70.
  • LePain, D.L., Stanley, R.G., Gillis, R.J., Helmold, K.P., Peterson, C.S., and Wartes, M.A., 2011, Deposition of Middle Jurassic Tuxedni Group, lower Cook Inlet, Alaska: Initial exhumation of an Early Jurassic island arc and incipient motion of the Bruin Bay fault zone [abs.]: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Pacific Section Annual Meeting, Anchorage, Alaska, 6-14 May, p. 71.
  • LePain, D.L., Wartes, M.A., McCarthy, P.J., Stanley, R.G., Silliphant, L.J., Helmold, K.P., Shellenbaum, D.P., Gillis, R.J., Peterson, Shaun, Mongrain, Jacob, and Decker, P.L., 2008, Tertiary depositional systems in upper Cook Inlet, Alaska: Influence of fluvial style on reservoir geometries and stratigraphic trap potential (poster): AAPG 2008 Annual Convention and Exhibition, Abstract Volume 17, p. 119: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, 1 sheet. http://doi.org/10.14509/21829
  • LePain, D.L., Decker, P.L., Wartes, M.A., Gillis, R.J., Mongrain, J.R., Kirkham, R., and Shellenbaum, D.P., 2008, Sedimentology and stratigraphy of Upper Cretaceous strata in the Sagavanirktok River area, east-central North Slope, Alaska [abs.]: American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Annual Convention, San Antonio, TX.
  • LePain, D.L., McCarthy, P.J., and Kirkham, R., 2006, Facies stacking patterns in storm-influenced delta front and shoreface successions, Nanushuk Formation, central North Slope, Alaska [abs.]: Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs v. 38, no. 5, p. 89. http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2006CD/finalprogram/abstract_104563.htm
  • LePain, D.L., Schoephoester, P.R., Thomas, C.L., and Czechanski, M.L., 2005, Bedrock geologic mapping and hydrostratigraphy of Lower Paleozoic strata in Pierce and St. Croix Counties, west-central Wisconsin [abs.]: Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs v. 37, no. 5, p. 94. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005NC/finalprogram/abstract_87256.htm
  • LePain, D.L., McCarthy, P.J., and Kirkham, R., 2004, Outcrop expression of sequence boundaries in the Albian-Cenomanian Nanushuk Formation, central North Slope, Alaska: American Association of Petroleum Geologists, 2004 Annual Convention Abstract Volume, p. A82.
  • LePain, D.L., and Kirkham, R., 2002, Stratigraphy of a Cenomanian estuarine complex in the Upper Nanushuk Formation, Ninuluk Bluff, Alaska: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Pacific Section Annual Meeting, Program and Abstracts, p. 87.
  • LePain, D.L., Kirkham, R., and McCarthy, P.J., 2002, Shoreline to basin transition(?) in Albian-Cenomanian strata east of the Sagavanirktok River, Brooks Range foothills, Alaska [abs.]: AAPG Pacific Section/SPE Regional Conference, Program and Abstracts, p. 87.
  • LePain, D.L., Clough, J.G., Blodgett, R.B., Goldhammer, R.K., Hanks, C.H., and Ryherd, T.J., 1999, Stratigraphy, structure and petroleum potential of the Holitna Lowland area, southwest Alaska: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Annual Convention, Official Program v. 8, p. A80.
  • LePain, D.L., Adams, K.A., and Mull, C.G., 1999, Outer-shelf to upper-slope storm deposits in the Tingmerkpuk sandstone (Neocomian), western North Slope, Alaska: American Association of Petroleum Geologists Annual Convention, Official Program v. 8, p. A81.
  • LePain, D.L., and Crowder, R.K., 1995, Influence of paleotopography on transgressive systems tract evolution: Deposition of the Kekiktuk Conglomerate and Kayak Shale, northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska: Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs v. 27, p. 60.
  • LePain, D.L., and Crowder, R.K., 1992, Evolution of Early Carboniferous depositional systems in the northeastern Brooks Range, Alaska [abs.]: International Conference on Arctic Margins, Anchorage, Alaska, p. 33.