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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

Plate History and Arabian Play Elements 2. Imprint of Pangea Breakup from Palaeo- & Mesozoic Successions

Geert Konert1; Anton Koopman1; Pieter Spaak1; Cees Van Oosterhout2; Malcolm Ross3

(1) Exploration New Ventures, SHELL E&P, Rijswijk, Netherlands.

(2) Research & Technology, Shell E&P, Rijswijk, Netherlands.

(3) Research & Technology, Shell E&P, Houston, TX.

Exploring for hydrocarbons in mature basins as well as in frontier areas have specific challenges but require a common approach. In mature areas, easy and obvious objectives have already been targeted whereas in frontier basins, choices and decisions have to be made on very little data. In both scenarios de-risking plays and polarizing a portfolio of opportunities should be based on a good knowledge of the entire geological evolution and its impact on the various play elements. At the base of this knowledge lies the understanding the plate tectonic development that requires reviewing a region in a wider context.

Specifically for this conference, two important plate tectonic events and their implications for Arabian geology and play concepts will be reviwed:

  1. The basement and the early, ‘Pan-African’ amalgamation history
  2. The Pangea break-up and Mesozoic to Cenozoic plate history

This second contribution summarises the break up history of Pangea in the Mediterranean and Middle East regions and the subsequent collision of the resultant parts with Eurasia during the Tertiary. The impact of plate processes and changes in plate kinematics on high level play parameters of some key mature and frontier plays will be illustrated with examples from Morocco to Oman.