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Mummery, Robert C.1
(1) Almandine Resources Inc, Calgary, AB

ABSTRACT: Hydrocarbon Potential of the Tuman River Area of North Korea (DPRK)

The Tuman River area is located in the extreme NE portion of the DPRK (North Korea) near its border with the PRC (China) and Russia. For obvious reasons, the region has been “out of bounds” for most explorers. Recent political events could lead to a “softening” of the world’s view of the DPRK and access to this area, which has not been explored since the mid 1960’s when a joint Russian-Korean team evaluated this region. At that time it was concluded that no commercial oil accumulations were present in any of the several Cenozoic basins located in the area. New geological ideas and unconventional business concepts encourage a re-evaluation of the prospectivity of the region. Over the years, gravity, magnetic & seismic surveys were undertaken in the study area and their data can test new geological concepts. Exploration is also encouraged since most of the 14 wells drilled in the 60’s had oil & gas shows. The stratigraphic sequence in the Tuman River area includes; alluvial fans, fluvial channels, coal beds, lacustrine deposits and volcanic units within fault bounded half graben basins. Outcrop and core hole sampling have provided source rock data that suggest hydrocarbon have been generated. A field trip to the area in 2002 was undertaken to verify observations from these data, mainly gathered in the 60’s. This talk will review earlier exploration results, summarize the results of the field visit and offer ideas for expected plays concepts and methodologies needed to evaluate the prospectivity of this region.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90026©2004 AAPG Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas, April 18-21, 2004.