Oil and Gas in saline systems

(1.5 days total for listed modules)

"Black salt"  Ara Fm., Oman

Salt tectonics (Halokinesis)

Giant oil and gas fields occur in halokinetically-influenced structures in many salt basins (e.g. Campos Basin, Gulf of Mexico, North Sea, Lower Congo Basin, Santos Basin and Zagros). How salt mineralogy, stacking, and flow thicknesses control sediment patterns, local and regional salt tectonic styles, as well as reservoir sedimentation and diagenesis (poroperm evolution controlled by saline brine flows).

         Code #    Topic

  • 2225.01     Physics of salt
  • 2225.02     Extensional salt settings
  • 2225.03     Compressional salt settings
  • 2225.04     Predictive salt models
  • 2225.05     Circum-salt diagenesis (ø&k)

Reservoirs in saline systems

A large proportion of the world’s giant and supergiant oil and gas fields are associated with salt. With carbonate reservoirs, this proportion is more than 50%. This is especially apparent in the Middle East, the North Sea, West Texas, the Gulf of Mexico, Western Canada, and the circum-Atlantic Aptian salt basins.


         Code #    Topic

  • 2250.01     Salt seal integrity
  • 2250.02     Beds, plays & plumes
  • 2250.03     Halokinetic reservoir
  • 2250.04     Dolomitization & salt
  • 2250.05     Predictive classification

Source Rocks

Oil in carbonate reservoirs, sealed by evaporite salts, may have been sourced in earlier less saline, but still related, evaporitic (mesohaline) conditions.  Similar conditions favor evaporite and organic matter preservation and so there are limits in the modern compared to the diversity of saline source rocks settings in the ancient.


         Code #    Topic

  • 2275.01     Salinity tolerances
  • 2275.02     Halotolerants & halophiles
  • 2275.03     Organic indicators (biomarkers)
  • 2275.04     Depositional settings
  • 2275.05     Why "feast or famine?"

Hutt Lagoon, Australia




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