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Mesozoic siliciclastic reservoirs and petroleum system in the Rub' Al-Khali Basin, Saudi Arabia

Simon A. Stewart, Christopher T. Reid, Nigel P. Hooker and Omar W. Kharouf
Mesozoic siliciclastic reservoirs and petroleum system in the Rub' Al-Khali Basin, Saudi Arabia
AAPG Bulletin (May 2016) 100 (5): 819-841

Abstract

Hydrocarbons have recently been discovered in Upper Triassic to Middle Jurassic siliciclastic reservoirs in the Rub' Al-Khali basin in Saudi Arabia. The reservoirs fill accommodation space created by Triassic and early Jurassic crustal-scale basins on the order of 100 km (62 mi) in wavelength and hundreds of meters in depth. These basins are separated by highs that are interpreted as crustal-scale epeirogenic folds. Lithologies include well-sorted quartz arenites deposited in shallow-marine, shoreface, and fluviodeltaic settings. These sequences can be correlated across the basin to extensive escarpment outcrops south of Riyadh and beyond Saudi Arabia into well-documented equivalents elsewhere in the Middle East and East Africa. The gross architecture of the interval is imaged on reflection seismic, showing clinoformal geometries and onlap onto the Triassic structured surface. Geochemistry of tested fluids indicates a type III kerogen source. The simplest interpretation is that the system is self-sourcing hydrocarbons from interbedded coaly material that is observed in the wells and at outcrop. Reservoir pressures are anomalously low relative to the overlying carbonate reservoir systems. These low pressures are interpreted to indicate lateral communication from the Rub' Al-Khali basin westward to outcrop, in contrast with the overlying carbonate fairways that are known to contain facies boundaries that trend across the regional dip. Onlapping geometries in the siliciclastic fairway combine with Cretaceous and Cenozoic compressional structures to create combined structural-stratigraphic traps.


ISSN: 0149-1423
EISSN: 1558-9153
Coden: AABUD2
Serial Title: AAPG Bulletin
Serial Volume: 100
Serial Issue: 5
Title: Mesozoic siliciclastic reservoirs and petroleum system in the Rub' Al-Khali Basin, Saudi Arabia
Affiliation: Saudi Aramco, Eastern Area Exploration Department, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
Pages: 819-841
Published: 201605
Text Language: English
Publisher: American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Tulsa, OK, United States
References: 62
Accession Number: 2016-076744
Categories: Applied geophysicsEconomic geology, geology of energy sourcesSedimentary petrology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sects., strat. cols., sketch maps
N17°00'00" - N24°00'00", E45°00'00" - E55°00'00"
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Tulsa, OK, United States
Update Code: 201637
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