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Integrated Well-log, Seismic, and Biostratigraphic Approach to Sequence Stratigraphy in Late Cenozoic Expanded Sections, Gulf of Mexico

MITCHUM, ROBERT M., JR., R M Mitchum Exploration Inc., Houston, TX, JOHN B. SANGREE, Sangree Exploration Inc., Houston, TX, PETER R. VAIL, Rice University, Houston, TX, and WALTER W. WORNAR, Microstrat Inc., Houston, TX

Increased emphasis on well-log signatures and recognition criteria for stratigraphic sequence boundaries, systems tracts, and condensed sections in a sequence-stratigraphic context has enhanced facies interpretation and reservoir prediction capabilities. Integration of well logs with high-resolution biostratigraphy and paleobathymetry, high-quality seismic configuration data, and the latest eustatic cycle chart provides the best data base for sequence-stratigraphic analysis. This approach is particularly effective for thick, rapidly deposited slope and basin sediments, such as in the Plio-Pleistocene of the Gulf of Mexico basin.

The general sequence-stratigraphic model consists of a depositional sequence with lowstand basin floor fan, slope fan, and prograding complex, transgressive systems tract, and highstand systems tract. Each systems tract is deposited at a predictable position in an interpreted eustatic cycle and has recognizable signatures in well logs and seismic data.

Any given basin to which this model is applied is strongly controlled by its own tectonic subsidence and accommodation history, and by the type and rate of sediment supply, but the higher frequency eustatic cyclicity is superposed on the other basinal controls. A typical depositional model for the Plio-Pleistocene of the Gulf of Mexico basin is a diapir-controlled subbasin associated with a large contemporaneous expansion fault. The environment of deposition is closely related to the history of fault development.

Reservoir sand distribution is characteristic and predictable for each systems tract. Carefully planned evaluation and completion techniques are based on these characteristics.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91004 © 1991 AAPG Annual Convention Dallas, Texas, April 7-10, 1991 (2009)