--> --> Abstract: Quantification of Quartz Cement and Pressure Solution Volumes, East Brae Field, Offshore UK, by A. Grau; #90925 (1999)

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GRAU, ANNE, Colorado School of Mines, Department of Geology and Geological Engineering, Golden, CO

Abstract: Quantification of Quartz Cement and Pressure Solution Volumes, East Brae Field, Offshore UK

Relatively few quantitative studies of quartz cements exist because it is difficult to differentiate authigenic quartz from detrital quartz using standard petrographic methods. The purpose of this study is to quantify quartz cements and to compare the results to estimates of volume loss due to chemical compaction. The study area is a North Sea petroleum reservoir, with variable distribution of quartz cement related to facies and structural position.

Photomultiplier-based cathodoluminescence detection systems combined with scanning electron microscopy (or scanned CL) provide a method to distinguish quartz cements from detrital grains. The resulting high-resolution images allow for detailed quantitative analysis of sandstones with respect to quartz mineral occurrences. Scanned CL is used to identify and quantify silica sources (such as partially dissolved feldspars and pressure solution features), as well as silica sinks (including quartz overgrowths and quartz fill in fractures or in fractured grains).

A profilometer is used to measure topography and quantify minimum volumes of silica lost to pressure solution along stylolite surfaces. This instrument, which is normally used to measure surface roughness, is being applied here as a new technique to evaluate chemical compaction in sandstones. By comparing quartz cement and pressure solution volumes, the distribution of quartz cement and processes responsible for precipitation will be more clearly understood, and the quantified results will be used as part of a silica budget effort. Integration of these data with wire-line log signatures will be applied to field-wide porosity modeling, quantification of reservoir pore volume, and overall reservoir characterization. 

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90925©1999 AAPG Foundation Grants-in-Aid