ABSTRACT

The subsurface of the highly productive Murzuq Basin in southwest Libya remains poorly understood. As a consequence, a need exists for detailed sedimentological studies of both the oil-prone Mamuniyat Formation and Hawaz Formation reservoirs in this area. Of particular interest in this case is the Middle Ordovician Hawaz Formation, interpreted as an excellent example of a “nonactualistic,” tidally influenced clastic reservoir that appears to extend hundreds of kilometers across much of the North African or Saharan craton. The Hawaz Formation comprises 15 characteristic lithofacies grouped into 7 correlatable facies associations distributed in broad and laterally extensive facies belts deposited in a shallow marine, intertidal to subtidal environment. Three main depositional sequences and their respective systems tracts have also been identified. On this basis, a genetic-based stratigraphic zonation scheme has been proposed as a tool to improve subsurface management of this reservoir unit. A nonactualistic sedimentary model is proposed in this work with new ideas presented for marginal to shallow marine depositional environments during the Middle Ordovician in the northern margin of Gondwana.

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