Eastern Section Meeting

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Devonian and Ordovician Shale Correlations under Lake Erie, Bridging the Gap


Over 2000 wells have been drilled in Lake Erie with most targeting the traditional Silurian natural gas zones in the Guelph, Grimsby and Whirlpool Formations. This extensive database allows for the correlation of the shallower Devonian section including the shales of the Hamilton and Kettle Point Formations. These shale units produce natural gas deeper in the Appalachian and Michigan Basins. Several wells in the central portion of Lake Erie have yielded gas shows from these shale units. The wells under the Canadian waters of Lake Erie are in a unique position to allow for the correlation of productive units deeper in the Appalachian Basin with those on the fringe of the basin and on the crest of the Algonquin Arch. Correlations are drawn from the neighboring States to the south that follow these shale units under Lake Erie and back onshore into southwestern Ontario. Fewer Lake Erie wells penetrate the deeper Cambro-Ordovician section. Those that do encounter a thick Ordovician shale sequence that includes the Collingwood or Utica equivalent. This section is difficult to correlate without good open hole log data, samples and the odd core. A handful of examples indicate the dark organic shales that rest on the Trenton Limestone may correlate with productive units seen elsewhere in these productive shale basins.