Steven Schamel, Allen Richardson, Arturo Alfonso P. Carlos
The timing of hydrocarbon generation relative to the closure of migration pathways and trap formation is key to characterization of the petroleum systems of the Cordillera Oriental and the prolific petroleum provinces of the Llanos and Magdalena. The exceptionally thick and organic rich Cretaceous source rock successions of the Cordillera Oriental had the potential to have generated vast quantities of liquid hydrocarbons. Yet due to unfavorable timing of hydrocarbon maturation vs. regional deformation, only a small portion of this oil may have migrated into traps beyond the limits of the Cordillera Oriental.
Maturation modeling based on detailed stratigraphic and structural data for sites in the Cordillera Oriental, Llanos, and the Middle and Upper Magdalena basins reveal the essential temporal features of the petroleum system. Virtually all of the Cretaceous source rock succession was generating liquid hydrocarbons in the Late Cretaceous and Paleocene, long before the development of the main structural traps within and along the foothills belts marginal to the Cordillera Oriental. Only in the northeast quarter and extreme south of the Cordillera Oriental and in the deeper parts of the flanking basins was oil being generated simultaneous with trap formation. The maturation modeling serves as a basis for understanding the known distribution of oil pools and a guide to future discoveries.
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90951©1996 AAPG International Conference and Exhibition, Caracas, Venezuela