Exploration in the Ombilin Intermontane Basin, West Sumatra
The Ombilin Basin is a Tertiary intermontane basin located within the Barisan Mountain Range of Sumatra. Oil exploration commenced in the Ombilin Basin in the early 1980s when geological mapping was carried out, a synthetic aperture radar survey was flown, and a basin-wide geophysical survey was completed. This effort led to the drilling of Sinimar No. 1 to a total depth 3020 m. Sinimar No. 1 was a historic well in Indonesia's oil industry since it was the first oil exploration well drilled in the Ombilin Basin and also the first well drilled in an intermontane basin in Indonesia. Oil, gas and condensate was tested in the well. An integrated interpretation of the well, geophysical and outcrop data indicates that despite its small areal size (30 km × 50 km), the Ombil n Basin is a deep pull-apart basin containing up to 4500 m of Tertiary sediments, ranging in age from Middle Eocene to Early Miocene. The basin currently is in an intermontane basin structural setting but it was also an intermontane basin during its Early Tertiary depositional history. During the Eocene, alluvial fans and massive debris flows were deposited on the basin margins and a large lake occupied the basin centre. Fluvial deposition occurred in the basin during the Oligocene followed by deposition of marine shales, sandstones, and isolated reefs during the Miocene. Although the Ombilin Basin is located within Sumatra's magmatic arc and is partially covered by volcanics from extinct and active volcanoes, the subsurface temperature gradients of 1.62 deg. F/100 ft. recorded in Sinima No. 1 and 1.47 deg F/100 ft. measured in a deep (670 m) coal exploration core hole are significantly cooler than the average subsurface temperature gradients in the Sumatra back-arc basins. Organic-rich Eocene lacustrine shales are the likely source rocks for the hydrocarbons tested in Sinimar No. 1 and the oil seeps located along the basin margins.
AAPG Search and Discover Article #91019©1996 AAPG Convention and Exhibition 19-22 May 1996, San Diego, California