The Alberta Deep Basin in western Canada has undergone a large amount of erosion following deep burial in the Eocene. Basin modeling and simulation of burial and temperature history require estimates of maximum overburden for each gridpoint in the basin model. Erosion can be estimated using shale compaction trends. For instance, the widely used Magara method attempts to establish a sonic log gradient for shales and uses the extrapolation to a theoretical uncompacted shale value as a first indication of overcompaction and estimation of the amount of erosion. Because such gradients are difficult to establish in many wells, an extension of this method was devised to help map erosion over a large area. Sonic A; values of one suitable shale formation are calibrated with maximum depth of burial estimates from sonic log extrapolation for several wells. This resulting regression equation then can be used to estimate and map maximum depth of burial or amount of erosion for all wells in which this formation has been logged. The example from the Alberta Deep Basin shows that the magnitude of erosion calculated by this method is conservative and comparable to independent estimates using vitrinite reflectance gradient methods. ?? 2001 International Association for Mathematical Geology.
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Modeling an exhumed basin: A method for estimating eroded overburden