Exploring the Weches Formation as a Potential Unconventional Oil and Gas Resource in Sabine County, Texas
Relatively fresh outcrop exposures of the Weches Formation (Middle Eocene) found within glauconite quarries of Sabine County, Texas, presents a unique opportunity to analyze its unconventional oil and gas potential by integrating geochemical, geophysical, petrophysical, and paleontological data collected through outcrop characterization. The Weches Formation is comprised of predominately nearshore shallow marine mudstones, with thicknesses that average 50 feet across the East Texas region.
Collected outcrop samples will be analyzed for total organic carbon (TOC) to determine if the total organic carbon present is >2% weight, which is generally the requirement for an unconventional reservoir to be considered an economical oil and gas resource. A handheld gamma-ray surveyor will be used to measure the total gamma-ray radiation of measured outcrop sections. Thus, measured sections from each of the quarries can be correlated based on total gamma-ray counts. Petrophysical properties and diagenetic features will be described and interpreted though thin section analysis, x-ray diffraction, and scanning electron microscopy techniques. Weches Formation exposures will be properly identified based on the paleontological analyses of foraminifera species. Potential reservoir facies of the Weches Formation will be described based on geochemical, geophysical, petrophysical, and paleontological results. The results from this study may have future implications on hydrocarbon exploration in East Texas by possibly generating new plays and renewing interest in other geologic formations from an unconventional perspective across the region.
AAPG Datapages/Search and Discovery Article #90219 © 2015 GCAGS, Houston, Texas, September 20-22, 2015