AAPG ANNUAL CONFERENCE AND EXHIBITION
Making the Next Giant Leap in Geosciences
April 10-13, 2011, Houston, Texas, USA
Fluid Flow and Compartmentalization on the Flank of a Salt Structure, Offshore Louisiana: Constraints from Temperature, Pressure, Salinity, and Seismic Data
(1) Geology & Geophysics, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA.
Vertical and lateral variations in lithology, salinity, temperature, and pressure determined from wireline LAS logs, produced water samples, and seismic data on the south flank of a salt structure on the continental shelf, offshore Louisiana indicate three hydrogeologic zones in the study area: a shallow region from 0 to 1.1 km depth with hydrostatically pressured, shale dominated Pleistocene age sediments containing pore waters with sea water (35 g/L) or slightly above sea water salinity; a middle region from 1.1 to 3.2 km depth with near hydrostatically pressured, sand dominated Pliocene age sediments that contain pore waters that range from seawater salinity to up to 5 times sea water salinity (180 g/L); and a deep section below 3.2 km depth with geopressured, shale dominated Miocene age sediments containing pore waters that range from sea water salinity to 125 g/L. Salt dissolution has generated dense, saline waters that appear to be migrating down dip preferentially through the thick Pliocene sandy section. Sand layers that come in contact with salt contain pore waters with high salinity. Isolated sands have near sea water salinity. Salinity information in conjunction with seismic data is used to infer fluid compartmentalization. Both vertical and lateral lithologic barriers to fluid flow at tens to hundreds of meters scale are observed. Fluid compartmentalization is also evident across a supradomal normal fault. Offset of salinity contours are consistent with the throw of the fault, which suggests that saline fluids migrated before fault formation.