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SCHENK, C. J., and J. W. SCHMOKER, U.S. Geological Survey, Denver, CO

ABSTRACT: Role of Halite in the Evolution of Sandstone Porosity, Upper Jurassic Norphlet Formation, Mississippi Salt Basin

Analysis of petrographic point-count data, cement paragenesis, and scanning electron microscopy examination of pores has shown that poikilitic halite cement in sandstones of the Norphlet Formation in a core from Wayne County, Mississippi, formed following cementation by quartz, feldspar, dolomite, and anhydrite. Intergranular volume ranges from 26 to 42%, averaging 35%, indicating that an average of 10% of the rock volume was lost to compaction, and a further 10-15% was lost to cementation prior to halite cementation, assuming a depositional porosity of about 45%. Most halite occurs as intergranular cement, but some halite is present as intragranular cement within framework feldspars and lithic fragments. Halite is easily removed from a sandstone during coring, slabbing, and thin-sect on preparation techniques that do not use oil-based fluids and muds, so the amount of porosity in these samples that is a product of artificial removal of halite is unknown. Although the present and former distribution of halite is poorly known, natural halite dissolution could have produced about 20% secondary porosity in the Norphlet Formation at depth in this part of the Mississippi Salt basin.

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