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Basin Analysis - Principles and Application to Petroleum Play Assessment 3E
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Companion website details x Preface to the third edition xi Part 1 The foundations of sedimentary basins 1 1 Basins in their geodynamic environment 3 Summary 3 1.1 Introduction and rationale 3 1.2 Compositional zonation of the Earth 6 1.2.1 Oceanic crust 6 1.2.2 Continental crust 7 1.2.3 Mantle 8 1.3 Rheological zonation of the Earth 8 1.3.1 Lithosphere 8 1.3.2 Sub-lithospheric mantle 10 1.4 Geodynamic background 10 1.4.1 Plate tectonics, seismicity and deformation 10 1.4.2 The geoid 12 1.4.3 Topography and isostasy 14 1.4.4 Heat flow 14 1.4.5 Cycles of plate reorganisation 15 1.5 Classification schemes of sedimentary basins 15 1.5.1 Basin-forming mechanisms 16 2 The physical state of the lithosphere 20 Summary 20 2.1 Stress and strain 21 2.1.1 Stresses in the lithosphere 21 2.1.2 Strain in the lithosphere 23 2.1.3 Linear elasticity 25 2.1.4 Flexure in two dimensions 27 2.1.5 Flexural isostasy 28 2.1.6 Effects of temperature and pressure on rock density 29 2.2 Heat flow 31 2.2.1 Fundamentals 31 2.2.2 The geotherm 31 2.2.3 Radiogenic heat production 33 2.2.4 Effect of erosion and sediment blanketing on the geotherm 36 2.2.5 Transient effects of erosion and deposition on the continental geotherm 37 2.2.6 Effect of variable thermal conductivity 38 2.2.7 Time-dependent heat conduction: the case of cooling oceanic lithosphere 39 2.2.8 Convection, the adiabat and mantle viscosity 41 2.3 Rock rheology and lithospheric strength profiles 43 2.3.1 Fundamentals on constitutive laws 43 2.3.2 Rheology of the mantle 44 2.3.3 Rheology of the continental crust 46 2.3.4 Strength profiles of the lithosphere 47 Part 2 The mechanics of sedimentary basin formation 51 3 Basins due to lithospheric stretching 53 Summary 53 3.1 Introduction 54 3.1.1 Basins of the rift?drift suite 54 3.1.2 Models of continental extension 54 3.2 Geological and geophysical observations in regions of continental extension 56 3.2.1 Cratonic basins 56 3.2.2 Rifts 60 3.2.3 Failed rifts 67 3.2.4 Continental rim basins 67 3.2.5 Proto-oceanic troughs 68 3.2.6 Passive continental margins 70 3.3 Uniform stretching of the continental lithosphere 72 3.3.1 The ?reference? uniform stretching model 72 3.3.2 Uniform stretching at passive continental margins 76 3.4 Modifications to the uniform stretching model 78 3.4.1 Protracted periods of rifting 78 3.4.2 Non-uniform (depth-dependent) stretching 80 3.4.3 Pure versus simple shear 83 3.4.4 Elevated asthenospheric temperatures 84 3.4.5 Magmatic activity 84 3.4.6 Induced mantle convection 85 3.4.7 Radiogenic heat production 86 3.4.8 Flexural compensation 86 3.4.9 The depth of necking 86 3.4.10 Phase changes 87 3.5 A dynamical approach to lithospheric extension 88 3.5.1 Generalities 88 3.5.2 Forces on the continental lithosphere 90 3.5.3 Rheology of the continental lithosphere 92 3.5.4 Numerical and analogue experiments on strain rate during continental extension 93 3.6 Estimation of the stretch factor and strain rate history 95 3.6.1 Estimation of the stretch factor from thermal subsidence history 95 3.6.2 Estimation of the stretch factor from crustal thickness changes 95 3.6.3 Estimation of the stretch factor from forward tectonostratigraphic modelling 96 3.6.4 Inversion of strain rate history from subsidence data 97 3.6.5 Multiple phases of rifting 97 4 Basins due to flexure 98 Summary 98 4.1 Basic observations in regions of lithospheric flexure 99 4.1.1 Ice cap growth and melting 99 4.1.2 Oceanic seamount chains 100 4.1.3 Flexure beneath sediment loads 101 4.1.4 Ocean trenches 103 4.1.5 Mountain ranges, fold-thrust belts and foreland basins 104 4.2 Flexure of the lithosphere: geometry of the defl ection 104 4.2.1 Deflection of a continuous plate under a point load (2D) or line load (3D) 104 4.2.2 Deflection of a broken plate under a line load 106 4.2.3 Deflection of a continuous plate under a distributed load 107 4.2.4 Bending stresses 108 4.3 Flexural rigidity of oceanic and continental lithosphere 109 4.3.1 Controls on the fl exural rigidity of oceanic lithosphere 109 4.3.2 Flexure of the continental lithosphere 111 4.4 Lithospheric buckling and in-plane stress 116 4.4.1 Theory: linear elasticity 116 4.4.2 Lithospheric buckling in nature and in numerical experiments 117 4.4.3 Origin of intraplate stresses 118 4.5 Orogenic wedges 118 4.5.1 Introduction to basins at convergent boundaries 118 4.5.2 The velocity fi eld at sites of plate convergence 120 4.5.3 Critical taper theory 120 4.5.4 Double vergence 125 4.5.5 Analogue models 127 4.5.6 Numerical approaches to orogenic wedge development 128 4.5.7 Low Peclet number intracontinental orogens 130 4.5.8 Horizontal in-plane forces during convergent orogenesis 130 4.6 Foreland basin systems 131 4.6.1 Introduction 131 4.6.2 Depositional zones 132 4.6.3 Diffusive models of mountain belt erosion and basin deposition 135 4.6.4 Coupled tectonic-erosion dynamical models of orogenic wedges 138 4.6.5 Modelling aspects of foreland basin stratigraphy 144 5 Effects of mantle dynamics 153 Summary 153 5.1 Fundamentals and observations 154 5.1.1 Introduction: mantle dynamics and plate tectonics 154 5.1.2 Buoyancy and scaling relationships: introductory theory 155 5.1.3 Flow patterns in the mantle 156 5.1.4 Seismic tomography 159 5.1.5 Plate mode versus plume mode 159 5.1.6 The geoid 162 5.2 Surface topography and bathymetry produced by mantle flow 164 5.2.1 Introduction: dynamic topography and buoyancy 164 5.2.2 Dynamic topography associated with subducting slabs 167 5.2.3 Dynamic topography associated with supercontinental assembly and dispersal 170 5.2.4 Dynamic topography associated with small-scale convection 173 5.2.5 Pulsing plumes 175 5.2.6 Hotspots, coldspots and wetspots 176 5.3 Mantle dynamics and magmatic activity 178 5.3.1 Melt generation during continental extension 179 5.3.2 Large igneous provinces 180 5.3.3 The northern North Atlantic and the Iceland plume 180 5.3.4 The Afar region, Ethiopia 180 5.4 Mantle dynamics and basin development 181 5.4.1 Topography, denudation and river drainage 181 5.4.2 Cratonic basins 183 5.4.3 The history of sea-level change and the fl ooding of continental interiors 183 6 Basins associated with strike-slip deformation 188 Summary 188 6.1 Overview 189 6.1.1 Geological, geomorphological and geophysical observations 189 6.1.2 Diversity of basins in strike-slip zones 193 6.2 The structural pattern of strike-slip fault systems 194 6.2.1 Structural features of the principal displacement zone (PDZ) 194 6.2.2 Role of oversteps 200 6.3 Basins in strike-slip zones 201 6.3.1 Geometric properties of pull-apart basins 201 6.3.2 Kinematic models for pull-apart basins 203 6.3.3 Continuum development from a releasing bend: evolutionary sequence of a pull-apart basin 206 6.3.4 Strike-slip deformation and pull-apart basins in obliquely convergent orogens 207 6.4 Modelling of pull-apart basins 209 6.4.1 Numerical models 209 6.4.2 Sandbox experiments: pure strike-slip versus transtension 215 6.4.3 Application of model of uniform extension to pull-apart basins 215 6.4.4 Pull-apart basin formation and thin-skinned tectonics: the Vienna Basin 216 6.5 Characteristic depositional systems 217 Part 3 The sedimentary basin-fill 223 7 The sediment routing system 225 Summary 225 7.1 The sediment routing system in basin analysis 226 7.2 The erosional engine 227 7.2.1 Weathering and the regolith 227 7.2.2 Terrestrial sediment and solute yields 233 7.2.3 BQART equations 243 7.2.4 Chemical weathering and global biogeochemical cycles 246 7.3 Measurements of erosion rates 246 7.3.1 Rock uplift, exhumation and surface uplift 246 7.3.2 Point-wise erosion rates from thermochronometers 247 7.3.3 Catchment-scale erosion rates from cosmogenic radionuclides 248 7.3.4 Catchment erosion rates using low-temperature thermochronometers 251 7.3.5 Erosion rates at different temporal and spatial scales 254 7.4 Channel-hillslope processes 256 7.4.1 Modelling hillslopes 256 7.4.2 Bedrock river incision 259 7.5 Long-range sediment transport and deposition 260 7.5.1 Principles of long-range sediment transport 260 7.5.2 Sediment transport in marine segments of the sediment routing system 263 7.5.3 Depositional sinks: sediment storage 265 7.5.4 Downstream fining 271 7.6 Joined-up thinking: teleconnections in source-to-sink systems 273 7.6.1 Provenance and tracers; detrital thermochronology 273 7.6.2 Mapping of the sediment routing system fairway 275 7.6.3 Landscape evolution models and response times 275 7.6.4 Interaction of axial and longitudinal drainage 282 8 Basin stratigraphy 284 Summary 284 8.1 A primer on process stratigraphy 285 8.1.1 Introduction 285 8.1.2 Accommodation, sediment supply and sea level 285 8.1.3 Simple 1D forward models from fi rst principles 286 8.2 Stratigraphic cycles: defi nition and recognition 289 8.2.1 The hierarchy from beds to megasequences 289 8.2.2 Forcing mechanisms 299 8.2.3 Unforced cyclicity 306 8.3 Dynamical approaches to stratigraphy 308 8.3.1 Carbonate stratigraphy 308 8.3.2 Siliciclastic stratigraphy 308 8.3.3 Shelf-edge and shoreline trajectories; clinoform progradation 310 8.4 Landscapes into rock 315 8.4.1 Stratigraphic completeness 315 8.4.2 Gating models 318 8.4.3 Hierarchies and upscaling 322 8.4.4 Magnitude-frequency relationships 324 9 Subsidence history 326 Summary 326 9.1 Introduction to subsidence analysis 327 9.2 Compressibility and compaction of porous sediments: fundamentals 327 9.2.1 Effective stress 328 9.2.2 Overpressure 328 9.3 Porosity and permeability of sediments and sedimentary rocks 330 9.3.1 Measurements of porosity in the subsurface 331 9.3.2 Porosity-depth relationships 333 9.3.3 Porosity and layer thicknesses during burial 334 9.4 Subsidence history and backstripping 335 9.4.1 Backstripping techniques 335 9.5 Tectonic subsidence signatures 339 10 Thermal history 343 Summary 343 10.1 Introduction 344 10.2 Theory: the Arrhenius equation and maturation indices 344 10.3 Factors influencing temperatures and paleotemperatures in sedimentary basins 345 10.3.1 Effects of thermal conductivity 345 10.3.2 Effects of internal heat generation in sediments 347 10.3.3 Effects of sedimentation rate and sediment blanketing 348 10.3.4 Effects of advective heat transport by fluids 349 10.3.5 Effects of surface temperature changes 349 10.3.6 Heat flow around salt domes 350 10.3.7 Heat flow around fractures 351 10.3.8 Heat flows around sills, dykes and underplates 351 10.3.9 Thermal effects of delamination 354 10.4 Measurements of thermal maturity in sedimentary basins 354 10.4.1 Estimation of formation temperature from borehole measurements 355 10.4.2 Organic indicators 355 10.4.3 Low-temperature thermochronometers 358 10.4.4 Mineralogical and geochemical indices 360 10.5 Application of thermal maturity measurements 361 10.5.1 Vitrinite refl ectance (Ro) profi les 361 10.5.2 Fission track age-depth relationships 366 10.5.3 Quartz cementation 366 10.6 Geothermal and paleogeothermal signatures of basin types 367 Part 4 Application to petroleum play assessment 371 11 Building blocks of the petroleum play 373 Summary 373 11.1 From basin analysis to play concept 374 11.2 The petroleum system and play concept 374 11.2.1 Play defi nition 374 11.2.2 The petroleum system 375 11.2.3 Definition and mapping of the play fairway 376 11.3 The source rock 379 11.3.1 The biological origin of petroleum 380 11.3.2 Source rock prediction 384 11.3.3 Detection and measurement of source rocks 391 11.4 The petroleum charge 393 11.4.1 Some chemical and physical properties of petroleum 393 11.4.2 Petroleum generation 395 11.4.3 Primary migration: expulsion from the source rock 396 11.4.4 Secondary migration: through carrier bed to trap 398 11.4.5 Alteration of petroleum 401 11.4.6 Tertiary migration: leakage to surface 402 11.5 The reservoir 402 11.5.1 Introduction 403 11.5.2 Reservoir properties: porosity and permeability 404 11.5.3 Primary or depositional factors affecting reservoir quality 404 11.5.4 Diagenetic changes to reservoir rocks 406 11.5.5 Reservoir architecture and heterogeneity 408 11.5.6 Carbonate reservoir quality in relation to sea-level change 410 11.5.7 Models for clay mineral early diagenesis in sandstone reservoirs 413 11.5.8 Fractures 413 11.6 The regional topseal 415 11.6.1 The mechanics of sealing 416 11.6.2 Factors affecting caprock effectiveness 416 11.6.3 The depositional settings of caprocks 417 11.7 The trap 419 11.7.1 Introduction: trap classification 419 11.7.2 Structural traps 420 11.7.3 Stratigraphic traps 430 11.7.4 Intrusive traps: injectites 432 11.7.5 Hydrodynamic traps 433 11.7.6 Timing of trap formation 433 11.8 Global distribution of petroleum resources 434 12 Classic and unconventional plays 436 Summary 436 12.1 Classic petroleum plays 437 12.1.1 Introduction 437 12.1.2 Niger Delta 437 12.1.3 Campos Basin, Brazil 439 12.1.4 Santos Basin pre-salt play, Brazil 440 12.1.5 Northwest Shelf, Australia (Dampier sub-basin) 441 12.2 Unconventional petroleum plays 442 12.2.1 Introduction 442 12.2.2 Tight gas 443 12.2.3 Shale gas 444 12.2.4 Coal seam gas 445 12.2.5 Gas hydrates 445 12.2.6 Oil sands and heavy oil 446 12.3 Geosequestration: an emerging application 449 Appendices: derivations and practical exercises 455 1 Rock density as a function of depth 457 2 Airy isostatic balance 459 3 Deviatoric stress at the edge of a continental block 461 4 Lateral buoyancy forces in the lithosphere 463 5 Derivation of flexural rigidity and the general flexure equation 465 6 Flexural isostasy 468 7 The 1D heat conduction equation 470 8 Derivation of the continental geotherm 472 9 Radiogenic heat production 473 10 Surface heat fl ow and the radiogenic contribution 475 11 Radiogenic heat production of various rock types 477 12 Effects of erosion and deposition on the geotherm 479 13 Effects of variable radiogenic heating and thermal conductivity on the geotherm in the basin-fill 481 14 The mantle adiabat and peridotite solidus 485 15 Lithospheric strength envelopes 487 16 Rift zones: strain rate, extension velocity and bulk strain 490 17 The ?reference? uniform extension model 492 18 Boundary conditions for lithospheric stretching 494 19 Subsidence as a function of the stretch factor 496 20 Inversion of the stretch factor from thermal subsidence data 497 21 Calculation of the instantaneous syn-rift subsidence 499 22 The transient temperature solution 501 23 Heat flow during uniform stretching using a Fourier series 503 24 The stretch factor for extension along crustal faults 505 25 Protracted rifting times during continental extension 507 26 Lithospheric extension and melting 508 27 Igneous underplating ? an isostatic balance 509 28 Uniform stretching at passive margins 510 29 Flexure of continuous and broken plates 511 30 The time scale of fl exural isostatic rebound or subsidence 513 31 Flexural rigidity derived from uplifted lake paleoshorelines 515 32 Deflection under a distributed load ? Jordan (1981) solution 516 33 Deflection under a distributed load ? numerical solution of Wangen (2010) 517 34 Deflection under a periodic distributed load 519 35 Flexural unloading from a distributed load ? the cantilever effect 520 36 Bending from multiple loads: the Hellenides and Apennines in central Italy?Albania 522 37 Flexural profiles, subsidence history and the flexural forebulge unconformity 524 38 Bending stresses in an elastic plate 525 39 In-plane forces and surface topography during orogenesis 527 40 The onset of convection 529 41 A global predictor for sediment discharge: the BQART equations 530 42 Modelling hillslopes 532 43 The sediment continuity (Exner) equation 534 44 Use of the stream power rule 535 45 Effects of tectonic uplift on stream longitudinal profiles 537 46 Estimation of the uplift rate from an area-slope analysis 539 47 Uplift history from stream profiles characterised by knickpoint migration 540 48 Sediment deposition using the heat equation 541 49 Axial versus transverse drainage 542 50 Downstream fining of gravel 545 51 Sinusoidal eustatic change superimposed on background tectonic subsidence 546 52 Isostatic effects of absolute sea-level change 547 53 Sea-level change resulting from sedimentation 548 54 The consolidation line 549 55 Relation between porosity and permeability ? the Kozeny-Carman relationship 550 56 Decompaction 551 57 Backstripping 555 58 From decompaction to thermal history 556 59 Advective heat transport by fl uids 562 60 Heat flow in fractured rock 563 References 564 Index 603

About the Author

Philip Allen graduated with a Bachelor s degree inGeology from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth and a PhD fromCambridge University. He held lectureships at Cardiff and Oxford,and professorships at Trinity College Dublin, ETH-Zurich andImperial College London. He is a process-oriented Earth scientistwith particular interests in the interactions and feedbacks betweenthe solid Earth and its exosphere through thecritical interface of the Earth s surface. John Allen has over 30 years of experience in theinternational oil and gas industry as a petroleum geologist,exploration manager, senior exploration advisor, and businessstrategist with British Petroleum (BP) and BHP Billiton, as well asseveral years of experience as a non-executive director. He iscurrently based in Melbourne, Australia.

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