Abstract

The Rainbow Field is in reefal carbonates of the Middle Devonian Keg River Formation in the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin. Alternating field and thermal step demagnetization was done on specimens from unoriented core from a vertical, an inclined, and a horizontal well core in the dolomite reservoir. Although they had no viscous remanent magnetization component to use for orientation, most specimens had a well-defined characteristic remanent magnetization (ChRM) that resides in single to pseudosingle domain magnetite. By rotating the mean ChRM direction around its core axis, a small circle can be generated for each core and the small circles intersect in the true ChRM direction of D= 168°, I= −73.5o95 = 5.8°, k= 32.2). Its paleopole of 164°E, 83°N (A95 = 10°) defines a Tertiary age with one sigma limits of Middle Eocene to Middle Miocene age. Petrographic examination defines four generations of dolomite. Matrix dolomite has 60–100 μm diameter crystals that were later recrystallized to 200–400 μm. Dolomite cements are represented by vug-filling coarse dolomite (100–200 μm) and saddle dolomite (1000 μm). All four generations of dolomite give similar δ18O values of −10.7 to −16.5‰ (Peedee Belemnite, PDB), δ13C values of + 0.7 to +3.2‰ (PDB), and Sr isotopic ratios of 0.70826 to 0.70846 that do not match the expected Middle Devonian carbonate or sea-water values. We interpret these data to indicate that mixed pre-Laramide basinal fluids, heated by burial during the Laramide Orogeny, were present during late Laramide time when the dolomites were recrystallized and (or) precipitated prior to petroleum migration and accumulation in the Rainbow “A” reservoir. Thus the combined use of paleomagnetism, geochemistry, and petrography has been proven to be a useful technique to date and identify dolomitization events and pathways for the migration of hydrocarbons.

You do not currently have access to this article.