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AAPG GEO 2010 Middle East
Geoscience Conference & Exhibition
Innovative Geoscience Solutions – Meeting Hydrocarbon Demand in Changing Times
March 7-10, 2010 – Manama, Bahrain

Basin Analysis and Organic Source Facies Studies of the Jurassic/Cretaceous Sediments in Northern Sinai, Egypt

Esam Abdelgawad1; Abdulrahman Alsharhan1; Mostafa M. Lotfy1; Ayman El Sai1

(1) UAE University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.

The Sinai Peninsula is bounded by the Suez Canal and Gulf of Suez rift to the west, the transform Dead Sea-Aqaba rift to the east and the Mediterranean passive margin to the north. The stratigraphic section in North Sinai ranges in age from Pre-Cambrian to Recent and varies in thickness between 2000m of mostly continental facies in the south to almost 8000m of marine facies in the north.

The northern Sinai represents an important hydrocarbon province in Egypt, but the origin of the hydrocarbons and their migration is not fully understood. Structural, stratigraphic and combination traps are encountered in the study area. The North Sinai district has a good oil exploration potential, and only a few plays have been tested.

In this study, we evaluated the organic source facies and assess the results of basin modeling in order to improve our understanding of the regional petroleum system in that region.
Organic/inorganic geochemical and petrographic analyses of 80 rock samples ranging in age from Early Jurassic to Cretaceous were accomplished. Most of the studied samples had moderate to high TOC contents and mixture type II/III kerogen with a wide range of petroleum generation potentials from very poor to very good. Thermal and burial history models indicated that the source rocks entered the early-mature/mature stage in very recent times. The top of the oil window ranges in depth from 3000 m to 4,300 m, whereas the bottom of the oil window was not reached by most of the studied wells. In combination with numerical modeling results, structure contour maps for key horizons revealed possible migration trends and prospective areas. We tentatively identified prospective targets for hydrocarbon exploration in the Cretaceous succession, especially where carbonate build-ups are present.