Natural fracturing and petrophysical properties of the Palisades dolerite sill
D. Goldberg, K. Burgdorff, 2005. "Natural fracturing and petrophysical properties of the Palisades dolerite sill", Petrophysical Properties of Crystalline Rocks, P. K. Harvey, T. S. Brewer, P. A. Pezard, V. A. Petrov
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This investigation of naturally occurring fractures in the mafic rocks of the Palisades dolerite sill characterizes the porosity of this crystalline rock sequence, and yields a method of determining the in situ porosity when complete down-hole information is not available. Two holes, 229 m and 305 m deep, were drilled 450 m apart through the sill and into the underlying Triassic sediments of the Newark Basin. Both holes were logged with geophysical tools, including the acoustic borehole televiewer (BHTV), to identify intervals of high porosity, fracturing, and potential zones of active fluid flow. Using the BHTV data, 96 and 203 fractures were digitally mapped within the sill in Well 2 and Well 3, respectively. Most fractures dip steeply (76–78°). There is a shift in fracture orientation between Well 2 and Well 3, although the lithology of the sill is continuous. The dolerite penetrated in both holes is fresh and unaltered, and intersects a 7-m thick olivine-rich layer about 15 m above the bottom of the sill. Several fractures identified in the sill have large apparent aperture (>6 cm) that correspond to high-porosity zones (6–14%), measured from both resistivity and neutron logs in Well 2. We use a relationship between porosity and apparent fracture aperture in Well 2 to infer the porosity in Well 3. This correlative method for estimating porosity may be applicable between holes in other crystalline rock environments where down-hole log data are incomplete. Changes in the temperature gradient log also indicate active fluid flow, although flow appears to be most active in fractured and high-porosity zones in the sediments.
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Boreholes are commonly drilled into crystalline rocks to evaluate their suitability for various applications such as waste disposal (including nuclear waste), geothermal energy, hydrology, sequestration of greenhouse gases and for fault analysis. Crystalline rocks include igneous, metamorphic and even some sedimentary rocks. The quantification and understanding of individual rock masses requires extensive modelling and an analysis of various physical and chemical parameters. This volume covers the following aspects of the petrophysical properties of crystalline rocks: fracturing and deformation, oceanic basement studies, permeability and hydrology, and laboratorybased studies. With the growing demands for sustainable and environmentally effective development of the subsurface, the petrophysics of crystalline rocks is becoming an increasingly important field.