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Abstract: Sequence-Stratigraphic Elements and Geochemical Variability Within a "Condensed Section": Eagle Ford Group, East-Central Texas

Louis M. Liro, William C. Dawson, Barry J. Katz, Vaughn D. Robison

The Cenomanian-Turonian Eagle Ford Group, the likely source for the East Texas field, crops out along a broad belt in central and northeastern Texas. Detailed analysis of Eagle Ford outcrops in central Texas reveals considerable variability at several different scales. A lower section is interpreted to represent transgressive, in-part "condensed" deposits, whereas the overlying section is interpreted as a highstand deposit. This sequence-stratigraphic framework is suggested by stratigraphic and geochemical evidence. The lower portion of the measured Eagle Ford Group outcrops contains dark shales with a blocky character. These shales exhibit minor bioturbation and are well laminated. A few bentonites are evident in this portion of the section but are not as significant as in the overly ng unit. Above this interval, the Eagle Ford changes character dramatically, exhibiting a series of interbedded carbonate flags and recessive shales and numerous bentonites. Several bentonite layers appear to be continuous regionally, and compositional analyses suggest that they may be useful in stratigraphic correlation. Detailed organic geochemical analyses clearly differentiate the upper and lower Eagle Ford. The shales in the lower transgressive unit are organically enriched, exhibit higher generation potentials, and are more oil prone than shales in the overlying regressive interval. Even within the oil-prone intervals, there is considerable variation in geochemical attributes. This work raises concerns about uncritically equating "condensed sections" with source rock potential.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90983©1994 GCAGS and Gulf Coast SEPM 44th Annual Meeting, Austin, Texas, October 6-7, 1994