1. n. [Geology]
The pressure of fluids within the pores of a reservoir, usually hydrostatic pressure, or the pressure exerted by a column of water from the formation's depth to sea level. When impermeable rocks such as shales form as sediments are compacted, their pore fluids cannot always escape and must then support the total overlying rock column, leading to anomalously high formation pressures. Because reservoir pressure changes as fluids are produced from a reservoir, the pressure should be described as measured at a specific time, such as initial reservoir pressure.
Synonyms: hydrostatic pressure
2. n. [Drilling]
The pressure of the subsurface formation fluids, commonly expressed as the density of fluid required in the wellbore to balance that pore pressure. A normal pressure gradient might require 9 lbm/galUS [1.08 kg/m3], while an extremely high gradient may need 18 lbm/galUS [2.16 kg/m3] or higher.