A subtle diagenetic trap in the Cretaceous Glauconite Sandstone of Southwest Alberta

Earth-Science Reviews



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Despite the long history of research which documents many studies involving extensive diagenesis, there are a few examples of a fully documented diagenetic trap. In the context of this paper, a trap is a hydrocarbon-bearing reservoir with a seal; because a reservoir without a seal acts as a carrier bed. The difficulty in the proper documentation of diagenetic traps is often due to the lack of: (a) extensive field records on the perforation and production histories, which assist in providing the depth of separation between hydrocarbon production and non-hydrocarbon or water production; and (b) the simultaneous availability of core data from these intervals, which could be studied for the extent and nature of diagenesis. This paper provides documentation for the existence of a diagenetic trap, based on perforation depths, production histories and petrologic data from the cored intervals, in the context of the geologic and stratigraphic setting. Cores from 15 wells and SP logs from 45 wells were carefully correlated and the data on perforated intervals was also acquired. Extensive petrographic work on the collected cores led to the elucidation of a diagenetic trap that separates water overlying and updip from gas downdip. Amoco's Berrymore-Lobstick-Bigoray fields, located near the northeastern edge of the Alberta Basin, are prolific gas producers. The gas is produced from reservoir rock consisting of delta platform deposits formed by coalescing distributary mouth bars. The overlying rock unit is composed of younger distributary channels; although it has a good reservoir quality, it contains and produces water only. The total thickness of the upper, water-bearing and lower gas-bearing sandstone is about 40 ft. The diagenetic seal is composed of a zone 2 to 6 ft thick, located at the base of distributary channels. This zone is cemented with 20-30% ankerite cement, which formed the gas migration and is also relatively early compared to other cements formed in the water zone. In addition to this barrier to vertical flow, a barrier to lateral flow is formed by the merging of the upper sandstone containing 14% kaolinite and the lower sandstone containing 20% siderite. The measured core permeabilities in these zones vary from 0.0002 to 0.001 milli-darcies. This spatial configuration of diagenetic cements causing porous and non-porous zones is a result of the process of geochemical self-organization. The spatial and temporal patterns of diagenesis are a complex result of coupling of natural processes involving fluid flow, fluid composition, mineral composition and mineral dissolution rates under the conditions of varying pressure and temperature in the subsurface. ?? 1990.

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A subtle diagenetic trap in the Cretaceous Glauconite Sandstone of Southwest Alberta
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Earth-Science Reviews
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