Abstract

We have performed 2D and 3D gas hydrate (GH) petroleum systems modeling for the Pleistocene turbiditic sedimentary sequences distributed in the Daini-Atsumi area in the eastern Nankai Trough to understand the accumulation mechanisms and their spatial distribution related to geologic and geochemical processes. High-resolution seismic facies analysis and interpretations were used to define facies distributions in the models. We have created a new biogenic methane generation model based on the biomarker analysis using core samples and incorporated it into our model. Our 2D models were built and simulated to confirm the parameters to be used for 3D modeling. Global sea level changes and paleogeometry estimated from 3D structural restoration results were taken into account to determine the paleowater depth of the deposited sedimentary sequences. Pressure and temperature distributions were modeled because they are the basic factors that control the GH stability zone. Our 2D modeling results suggested that the setting of biogenic methane generation depth is one of the most important controlling factors for GH accumulation in the Nankai Trough, which may be related to the timing of methane upward migration (expulsion) and methane solution process in pore water. Our 3D modeling results suggested that the distribution of sandy sediments and the formation dip direction are important controlling factors in the accumulation of GHs. We also found that the simulated amount of GH accumulation from the petroleum systems modeling compares well with independent estimations using 3D seismic and well data. This suggests that the model constructed in this study is valid for this GH system evaluation and that this type of evaluation can be useful as a supplemental approach to resource assessment.

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