Abstract

Geothermal gradients are examined in West Texas and eastern New Mexico, and it is found that the gradients in the salt section of the Permian Salado formation are nearly uniform throughout the region. The values range from 7.70 to 9.00 degrees C/km. Measured values of the thermal conductivity of rock salt are reviewed, and it is concluded that this quantity is most likely to be about 13 X 10 (super -3) cal/cm sec degrees C., with an estimated uncertainty of ten percent. From these figures, the heat flow is found to be 1.1 + or - 0.1 X 10 (super -6) cal/cm 2 sec in this region.

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