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Geological studies of the COST nos. G-1 and G-2 wells, United States North Atlantic outer continental shelf

Circular 861

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Abstract

The COST Nos. G-1 and G-2 wells (fig. 1) are the second and third deep stratigraphic test wells drilled in the North Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf of the United States. COST No. G-1 was drilled in the Georges Bank basin to a total depth of 16,071 ft (4,898 m). G-1 bottomed in phyllite, slate, and metaquartzite overlain by weakly metamorphosed dolomite, all of Cambrian age. From approximately 15,600 to 12,400 ft (4,755 to 3,780 m) the strata are Upper Triassic(?), Lower Jurassic(?), and Middle Jurassic, predominantly red shales, sandstones, and conglomerates. Thin, gray Middle Jurassic beds of shale, sandstone, limestone, and dolomite occur from 12,400 to 9,900 ft (3,780 to 3,018 m). From 9,900 to 1,030 ft (3,018 to 314 m) are coarse-grained unconsolidated sands and loosely cemented sandstones, with beds of gray shale, lignite, and coal. The microfossils indicate the rocks are Upper Jurassic from 10,100 ft (3,078 m) up to 5,400 ft (1,646 m) and Cretaceous from that depth to 1,030 ft (314 m). No younger or shallower rocks were recovered in the drilling at the COST No. G-1 site, but an Eocene limestone is inferred to be disconformable over Santonian strata. The Jurassic strata of the COST No. G-1 well were deposited in shallow marine, marginal marine, and nonmarine environments, which changed to a dominantly shallow marine but still nearshore environment in the Cretaceous. The COST No. G-2 well was drilled 42 statute miles {68 km) east of the G-1 site, still within the Georges Bank basin, to a depth of 21,874 ft (6,667 m). The bottom 40 ft (12 m) of salt and anhydrite is overlain by approximately 7,000 ft {2,134 m) of Upper Triassic{?), Lower Jurassic{?) and Middle Jurassic dolomite, limestone, and interbedded anhydrite from 21,830 to 13,615 ft (6,654 to 4,153 m). From 13,500 to 9,700 ft (4,115 to 2,957 m) are Middle Jurassic limestones with interbedded sandstone. From 9,700 to 4,000 ft (2,957 to 1,219 m) are Upper Jurassic and Cretaceous interbedded sandstones and limestones overlain by Upper Cretaceous unconsolidated sands, sandstones, and calcareous shales. Pliocene, Miocene, Eocene, and Paleocene strata are disconformable over Santonian rocks; uppermost Cretaceous rocks are missing at this site, as at G-1. The sedimentary rocks in the COST No. G-2 well were deposited in somewhat deeper water, farther away from sources of terrigenous material than those at G-l, but still in marginal marine to shallow marine environments. Data from geophysical logs and examination of conventional cores, wellcuttings, and sidewall cores show that below 10,000 ft {3,048 m), the strata in both wells have moderate porosities {< 20 percent) and low to moderate permeabilities {< 100 mD) and are thus considered adequate to poor reservoir rocks. Above 10,000 ft (3,000 m) the porosities range from 16 to 39 percent, and the permeabilities are highly variable, ranging from 0.01 to 7,100 mD. Measurements of vitrinite reflectance, color alteration of visible organic matter, and various organic geochemical properties suggest that the Tertiary and Cretaceous strata of the COST Nos. G-1 and G-2 are not prospective for oil and gas. These sediments have not been buried deeply enough for hydrocarbon generation, and the kerogen and extractable organic matter in them are thermally immature. However, the Jurassic rocks at the G-1 site do contain small amounts of thermally mature gas-prone kerogens. The Jurassic rocks at COST No. G-2 are also gas-prone and are slightly richer in organic carbon and total extractable hydrocarbons than the G-1 rocks, but both sites have only poor to fair oil and gas source-rock potential.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Geological studies of the COST nos. G-1 and G-2 wells, United States North Atlantic outer continental shelf
Series title:
Circular
Series number:
861
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1982
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
vi, 193 p. :ill., maps ;26 cm.