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PETERSEN, KENNETH, and IAN LERCHE, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC

ABSTRACT: Inversion of Salt Diapirs and Sedimentary Bed Observations: Gulf Coast Case Histories

An inverse procedure is used to remove sediments from around salt diapirs in a manner consistent with evolution of the salt diapir, which also is determined self-consistently by the inverse procedure.

The corresponding evolving stress and strain of the sediments are then calculated from use of specified Lame constants, and the times and spatial domains identified where the Coulomb-Mohr rock failure criterion is satisfied, thereby yielding estimates of fault and fracture locations. In addition, the combined evolutionary picture is used to assess thermal focusing by the highly conductive evolving salt, so that thermal anomalies in relation to hydrocarbon maturation around the evolving salt and structural development of sediment bed upturning and salt overhang evolution can be timed better relative to hydrocarbon emplacement.

Several examples from the Gulf of Mexico are analyzed using this new inversion procedure.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90989©1993 GCAGS and Gulf Coast SEPM 43rd Annual Meeting, Shreveport, Louisiana, October 20-22, 1993.