Anomalously high-amplitude seismic reflections are commonly observed in deeply buried Ordovician carbonate strata in the Halahatang area of the northern Tarim Basin. These bright spots have been demonstrated to be generally related to effective oil and gas reservoirs. These bright spot reflections have complex geological origins, because they are deeply buried and have been altered by multi-phase tectonic movement and karstification. Currently, there is no effective geological model for these bright spots to guide hydrocarbon exploration and development. Using core, well logs, and seismic data, the geological origins of bright spot are classified into three types, controlled by karstification, faulting, and volcanic hydrothermal activity. Bright spots differing by geological origin exhibit large differences in seismic reflection character, such as reflection amplitude, curvature, degree of distortion, and the number of vertically stacked bright spots in the seismic section. By categorizing the bright spots and the seismic character of the surrounding strata, their geological origins can after be inferred. Reservoirs formed by early karstification were later altered by epigenetic karstification. Two periods of paleodrainage further altered the early dissolution pores. In addition, faults formed by tectonic uplift also enhanced the dissolution of the flowing karst waters. Some reservoirs were subsequently altered by Permian volcanic hydrothermal fluids.

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