3-D Structural Evolution of the Lisbon Valley Salt Anticline, Paradox Basin, Utah
Geology, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL, USA
Natural fractures can have a profound effect on crustal fluid flow and provide valuable evidence of structural history. One way to create stresses large enough to fracture sedimentary rocks is to extend them laterally by stretching them in an arch over a rising pillow or diapir of salt. In such a situation, the distribution of fluids in the vicinity of the salt structure depends on stratigraphy and the connectivity of the fracture networks, which and can be characterized by their orientation, abundance, spacing, and length. Studying the geometry of fracture networks is therefore important in several subsurface geological applications, for example, oil reservoirs, mining geology, and waste storage.
Since a large number of hydrocarbon accumulations occur in the vicinity of salt structures, I have chosen to study the Lisbon Valley Salt Anticline because I will be able to closely document the fracture network and 3-D geometry of this well-exposed and easily accessible salt body. I have hypothesized that fracture network properties in the Lisbon Valley anticline are controlled by the evolution of the structure. I will test my hypothesis by analyzing the 3-D structural evolution of the Lisbon Valley Salt Anticline, combining surface data from fieldwork with subsurface data from well logs and two 3-D seismic surveys. I will use these data to construct and restore a 3-D model of the structure, and then use that model to predict the development of fracture networks. Fracture properties predicted from the model will then be compared to those documented in the field.
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90199 © 2014 AAPG Foundation 2014 Grants-in-Aid Projects