Reliable modeling of meandering fluvial reservoirs is challenging because of the heterogeneity in magnitude and pattern of porosity and permeability related to depositional and diagenetic features. Early mechanical and chemical alterations proceed along different pathways directly related to depositionally governed differences in textural and compositional parameters. In a well-constrained sedimentological framework and with relatively homogeneous conditions of detrital composition, this study aims to determine the effect of depositional fabric on early diagenetic processes and their collective effect on petrophysical properties (pore size distribution, open porosity, and permeability). A high-resolution qualitative and quantitative petrographic analysis is conducted on 22 fine- to very fine–grained sandstones from the main meandering fluvial facies of the channel (center and margin), point bar (lower, middle, and upper), scroll bar, and chute channel of a Triassic outcrop analog. The occurrence of small-scale internal heterogeneity associated with detrital matrix and suspension-settling laminae favors the compaction process and hinders early pore-filling cement precipitation that helps the preservation of primary porosity. Multivariate statistical treatment of data demonstrates that large (>1 µm) and well-connected primary intergranular pores are the main contributors to permeability in the more heterogeneous samples. The distribution of the finer-grained sediment fraction is strongly facies related as a result of hydraulic sorting. Better understanding of linkages between depositionally predictable features and diagenetically induced heterogeneity may lead to realistic reservoir models and enhanced effectiveness of exploitation and bypassed-oil recovery strategies.

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