Palynology of the Huqf Supergroup, Oman
Nicholas J. Butterfield, John P. Grotzinger, 2012. "Palynology of the Huqf Supergroup, Oman", Geology and Hydrocarbon Potential of Neoproterozoic–Cambrian Basins in Asia, G. M. Bhat, J. Craig, J. W. Thurow, B. Thusu, A. Cozzi
Download citation file:
Extensive subsurface sampling of the Huqf Supergroup in the Sultanate of Oman has yielded microfossil assemblages of Cryogenian, Ediacaran and Early Cambrian age. Microfossils have been recovered from most stratigraphic units in the Huqf, including Marinoan-equivalent horizons of the Ghadir Manqil Formation (Cryogenian Abu Mahara Group), the Masirah Bay, Shuram and Buah formations of the Ediacaran Nafun Group, and the A3 (latest Ediacaran) and A6 (Early Cambrian) cycles of the Ara Group. Despite the extensive recovery of leiosphaerid acritarchs from the Shuram Formation, there is no indication of the large acanthomorphs typical of other early–middle Ediacaran assemblages. This absence suggests a relatively young (post-extinction) depositional age for the Shuram; however, the signal is complicated by local deep-water conditions and the facies-specific distribution of Proterozoic microfossils. A shallower-water sequence of undivided Nafun Group sediments preserves sphaeromorphic acritarchs in association with filamentous microfossils, fragmentary vendotaenids and possible vaucheriacean algae.
Figures & Tables
This volume provides a comprehensive overview of the geology and hydrocarbon potential of the major Neoproterozoic–Cambrian basins of Asia from Oman, across the Middle East and the Indian Subcontinent, to China and SE Siberia, along with new research on the region. Many of these areas (e.g., Oman, Bikaner–Nagaur Basin in India, South China and SE Siberia) host prolific Neoproterozoic–Cambrian petroleum systems with giant to supergiant fields. Three key elements: (1) tectonic stability, (2) relatively late phase of hydrocarbon generation and (3) presence of an effective evaporite seal, seem to be critical for the development of effective Neoproterozoic–Cambrian petroleum systems. These key elements appear of less consequence for the development of ‘unconventional’ hydrocarbons, and the future prospectivity in many of these basins may lie in the exploration for, and production of, shale gas and shale oil directly from the thermally mature, organic-rich source rocks.