Abstract

Natural gamma spectral (NGS) log motifs and cluster analysis were used to characterize outcropping sandstone bodies formed in braided and high-sinuosity streams of the Tertiary Tórtola fluvial system of the Loranca Basin (Spain). Five coarse-grained lithofacies comprise these deposits and determine distinct NGS log motif. Cross-plots and cluster analysis of NGS log data of the lithofacies suggest three distinct clusters. These clusters reflect distinct values for sandstones with small sets of ripple lamination, cross-stratification, and conglomerates and pebbles. Ripple-laminated sandstones show the most variability in NGS signature, whereas conglomeratic sandstones show the most uniform signature. Such cluster analysis may be used to assign NGS log data points of unknown origin to a specific fluvial lithofacies under conditions of equal rock provenance and diagenetic history. A sedimentaclastic (i.e. sedimentary parent rock) origin of sediments appears to be the main control on detrital composition that, in turn, varies with grain size.

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