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New Geologic Map of Eastern Nevada

Chamberlain, Alan *1
(1) Outland Studies, Inc, Las Vegas, NV.

A new geological map of eastern Nevada promises to fill the void caused by the lack of state geological survey and provides exploration companies a necessary tool to help them successfully exploit the natural resources of the region. The new geologic map can be used to find exposures of rich resource shales and porous reservoir rocks. Thrust faults, fold axes, and other features on the new map provide leads to structural traps. Measured sections and well studies coupled with accurately mapped sequence boundary contacts provide the basic data to create structural contour maps on selected target unconformities.

The new map incorporates existing geologic maps and the results of nearly 55,000 precisely located proprietary structural attitudes with lithologic descriptions. Many mapping errors in the publicly available county and local maps have been corrected and the prolific and confusing stratigraphic nomenclature between mountain ranges has been simplified. Simplifying the stratigraphic nomenclature and avoiding mapping errors require adequate stratigraphic experience.

Remeasuring classic measured sections by Shell Oil Company and measuring many new stratigraphic sections is an excellent way to help geologists gain the experience necessary to recognize mappable stratigraphic sequences to accurately map the region. Surface gamma ray logs of all the measured sections greatly facilitate identification of stratigraphic sequences and allow correlation between surface and subsurface sections. Conodont and palynomorph microbiostratigraphy coupled with macrofossils confirm stratigraphic interpretations in the field. Mapping stratigraphic sequences that can be recognized from range to range instead of mapping lithologic units that commonly change from range to range greatly facilitates creating regional restorable balanced structural cross sections.

The new geologic map reveals many features that are consistent with compressional tectonics not found on other geologic maps. These newly mapped features strongly suggest that the structure of the eastern Great Basin was strongly influenced by compression. These newly identified compressional features in the region are consistent with new regional magnetic and gravity data and provide exciting leads to potential giant oil and gas fields and other mineral resources.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90142 © 2012 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition, April 22-25, 2012, Long Beach, California