Megascopic carbonaceous compression fossils from the Neoproterozoic Bhima Basin, Karnataka, South India
Mukund Sharma, Yogmaya Shukla, 2012. "Megascopic carbonaceous compression fossils from the Neoproterozoic Bhima Basin, Karnataka, South India", Geology and Hydrocarbon Potential of Neoproterozoic–Cambrian Basins in Asia, G. M. Bhat, J. Craig, J. W. Thurow, B. Thusu, A. Cozzi
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An abundant well-preserved assemblage of annulated carbonaceous compressions and impressions has been recorded from the intra-cratonic argillaceous sedimentary sequence of the Bhima basin in south India. Impressions and carbonaceous compressions recorded in the Hulkal Formation belong to annulated forms similar to the previously reported Sinosabellidites huainanensis, Protoarenicola baiguashanensis and Pararenicola huaiyuanensis from China. This paper discusses the diversity, systematics, affinity, biostratigraphical potential and global significance of these remains. The previously proposed worm-like body fossil affinity for these organisms, based on similarity with the Chinese assemblage, has been reinterpreted as with pre-Ediacaran epibenthic organisms. Fresh investigations of the Indian assemblage of such specimens reveal their close proximity to the algal affinity. The occurrence of global marker events, such as phosphatization, the presence of complicated annulated carbonaceous remains in the Hulkal Formation and the absence of stromatolites in the carbonate sequences of the Bhima basin, collectively indicate a Neoproterozoic, possibly pre-Sturtian age for the Bhima Group.
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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.