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Structural and petrophysical effects of overthrusting on highly porous sandstones: the Aztec Sandstone in the Buffington window, SE Nevada, USA

By
Luisa F. Zuluaga
Luisa F. Zuluaga
Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Allégaten 41, 5007 Bergen, NorwayCentre for Integrated Petroleum Research (Uni Research CIPR), Allégaten 41, 5007 Bergen, Norway
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Haakon Fossen
Haakon Fossen
Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Allégaten 41, 5007 Bergen, NorwayUniversity Museum of Bergen – The Natural History Collections, University of Bergen, PO Box 7800, 5020 Bergen, NorwayInstituto de Geociências, Universidade de São Paulo, Rua do Lago, 562, Cidade Universitária, São Paulo-SP CEP 05508-080, Brazil
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Gregory Ballas
Gregory Ballas
Institut Français de Recherche pour l’Exploitation de la Mer, Pointe du Diable, 29280 Plouzané, FranceGeosciences Montpellier, Université de Montpellier, Campus Triolet, CC060, Place Eugène, Bataillon, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 05, France
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Atle Rotevatn
Atle Rotevatn
Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Allégaten 41, 5007 Bergen, Norway
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Published:
January 01, 2018

Abstract

Little is known about the effect of thrusting on lithological and petrophysical properties of reservoir sandstone. Here we use field observations, probe permeability measurements and thin-section analysis along ten transects from the Muddy Mountain thrust contact downwards into the underlying Jurassic Aztec Sandstone to evaluate the nature and extent of petrophysical and microstructural changes caused by the thrusting. The results reveal a decimetre- to metre-thick low-permeable (≤50 mD) and indurated (0–3% porosity) zone immediately beneath the thrust contact in which dominant microscale processes, in decreasing order of importance, are (1) cataclasis with local fault gouge formation; (2) pressure solution; and (3) very limited cementation. From this narrow zone the petrophysical and microstructural effect of the thrusting decreases gradually downwards into a friable, highly porous (c. 25%) and permeable (≤2 D) sandstone some 50–150 m below the thrust, in which strain is localized into deformation band populations. In general, the petrophysical properties of the sandstone as a result of overthrusting reveal little impact in overall primary reservoir quality below some tens of metres into the footwall, except for the relatively minor baffling effect of deformation bands.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Subseismic-Scale Reservoir Deformation

M. Ashton
M. Ashton
Badley Ashton America Inc., USA
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S. J. Dee
S. J. Dee
BP Exploration and Operating Company Limited, UK
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O. P. Wennberg
O. P. Wennberg
Statoil, Norway
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The Geological Society of London
Volume
459
ISBN electronic:
9781786203403
Publication date:
January 01, 2018

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