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Burial history, thermal maturity, and oil and gas generation history of petroleum systems in the Wind River Basin Province, central Wyoming: Chapter 6 in Petroleum systems and geologic assessment of oil and gas resources in the Wind River Basin Province, Wyoming

Data Series 69-J-6

This report is Chapter 6 in Petroleum systems and geologic assessment of oil and gas resources in the Wind River Basin Province, Wyoming. For more information, see: Data Series 69-J.
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Abstract

Burial history, thermal maturity, and timing of oil and gas generation were modeled for eight key source rock units at nine well locations throughout the Wind River Basin Province. Petroleum source rocks include the Permian Phosphoria Formation, the Cretaceous Mowry Shale, Cody Shale, and Mesaverde, Meeteetse, and Lance Formations, and the Tertiary (Paleocene) Fort Union Formation, including the Waltman Shale Member. Within the province boundary, the Phosphoria is thin and only locally rich in organic carbon. Phosphoria oil produced from reservoirs in the province is thought to have migrated from the Wyoming and Idaho thrust belt. Locations (wells) selected for burial history reconstructions include three in the deepest parts of the province (Adams OAB-17, Bighorn 1-5, and Coastal Owl Creek); three at intermediate depths (Hells Half Acre, Shell 33X-10, and West Poison Spider); and three at relatively shallow locations (Young Ranch, Amoco Unit 100, and Conoco-Coal Bank). The thermal maturity of source rocks is greatest in the deep northern and central parts of the province and decreases to the south and east toward the basin margins. The results of the modeling indicate that, in the deepest areas, (1) peak petroleum generation from Cretaceous rocks occurred from Late Cretaceous through middle Eocene time, and (2) onset of oil generation from the Waltman Shale Member occurred from late Eocene to early Miocene time. Based on modeling results, gas generation from the cracking of Phosphoria oil reservoired in the Park City Formation reached a peak in the late Paleocene/early Eocene (58 to 55 Ma) only in the deepest parts of the province. The Mowry Shale and Cody Shale (in the eastern half of the basin) contain a mix of Type-II and Type-III kerogens. Oil generation from predominantly Type-II source rocks of these units in the deepest parts of the province reached peak rates during the latest Cretaceous to early Eocene (65 to 55 Ma). Only in these areas of the basin did these units reach peak gas generation from the cracking of oil, which occurred in the early to middle Eocene (55 to 42 Ma). Gas-prone source rocks of the Mowry and Cody Shales (predominantly Type-III kerogen), and the Mesaverde, Meeteetse, Lance, and Fort Union Formations (Type –III kerogen) reached peak gas generation in the latest Cretaceous to late Eocene (67 to 38 Ma) in the deepest parts of the province. Gas generation from the Mesaverde source rocks started at all of the modeled locations but reached peak generation at only the deepest locations and at the Hells Half Acre location in the middle Paleocene to early Eocene (59 to 48 Ma). Also at the deepest locations, peak gas generation occurred from the late Paleocene to the early Eocene (57 to 49 Ma) for the Meeteetse Formation, and during the Eocene for the Lance Formation (55 to 48 Ma) and the Fort Union Formation (44 to 38 Ma). The Waltman Shale Member of the Fort Union Formation contains Type-II kerogen. The base of the Waltman reached a level of thermal maturity to generate oil only at the deep-basin locations (Adams OAB-17 and Bighorn 1-5 locations) in the middle Eocene to early Miocene (36 to 20 Ma).

Geospatial Extents

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Burial history, thermal maturity, and oil and gas generation history of petroleum systems in the Wind River Basin Province, central Wyoming: Chapter 6 in Petroleum systems and geologic assessment of oil and gas resources in the Wind River Basin Province, Wyoming
Series title:
Data Series
Series number:
69-J-6
Year Published:
2007
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Reston, VA
Contributing office(s):
Wind River Basin Province Assessment Team
Description:
iv, 26 p.
Larger Work Type:
Report
Larger Work Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title:
Petroleum systems and geologic assessment of oil and gas resources in the Wind River Basin Province, Wyoming (Data Series 69-J)
Number of Pages:
30
Country:
United States
State:
Wyoming
Other Geospatial:
Wind River Basin Province