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Book Chapter

New Mexico

January 01, 1929


The Artesia field is of considerable interest to geologists since it is the first and the only commercial oil field so far discovered in the eastern half of New Mexico. Most of the information regarding the geologic column has been gained from the study of samples and logs of drilling wells, as there are no outcrops in the vicinity of the field. The deepest wells were in limestone at the bottom. The section drilled shows 4,000 feet of Permian sediments, half of which is marine dolomite. It resembles the Permian section in southwest Texas. It is thought that the whole column is Double Mountain and Clear Fork in age. Conditions of deposition in the Artesia field are very similar to those that prevailed over the whole of the great Permian basin; few fossils are found. The structure is a northeasttrending anticline. Production is on the apex and south-east flank of this structure. The producing portion of the geologic section is a zone rather than a definite horizon. The source rocks are the Permian dolomites and associated shales. The Artesia field is an orthodox example of anticlinal collection. The question of porosity enters into the problem in a large measure. The porous producing spots appear to be located by chance. The oil has a mean gravity of 370 Be. Gas is one of the marketable products of the field. The composite decline curve fixes the life of the field at four years from discovery. Shooting improves the wells, and absence of water troubles makes development much cheaper. There is a possibility that additional pools of the Artesia type will be discovered in this general area.

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AAPG Special Publication

Structure of Typical American Oil Fields, Volume I

Sidney Powers
Sidney Powers
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
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January 01, 1929




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