AAPG Southwest Section

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Pennsylvanian-Permian? Chronostratigraphy? of the Eastern Midland Basin: Implications for basin filling evolution and paleogeography


The Midland Basin is the easternmost basin within the greater Permian Basin hydrocarbon-bearing province. The basin began accumulating sediments in the Pennsylvanian and was completely filled by the Guadalupian. This project aims to reconstruct the Pennsylvanian-early Permian sediment infill history of the Eastern shelf of the Midland Basin. Each biostratigraphic reports contains the depth of fusulinid occurrences that allow mapping the top of five biozones, namely the Wolfcampian, Canyon, Cisco, Strawn, and Lower Strawn. Using sea level as a datum, the tops of each biozone forms a regional chronostratigraphic surfaces that demonstrate the geometry of the basin at the end of the specific time interval. We infer that the point of maximum curvature in the shelf-to-basin transition approximates the shelf edge at that time. Thus, comparison of shelf edge locations through time allows reconstruction of the basin filling history. Six cross sections of the eastern shelf of the Midland Basin along the northeastern shelf, the middle eastern shelf, and finally the southeastern shelf, demonstrate the progradational and aggradational history of the eastern shelf into the Midland Basin.