Palynology, the study of organic fossils, is a widely applied biostratigraphic tool. However, palynofacies, the study of the entire organic assemblage; is hardly used in the hydrocarbon industry. Many classification schemes for palynofacies have been published, of which the classifications after Steffen & Gorin (1993) and Pittet & Gorin (1997) have proven to be best suited for sequence stratigraphic applications. The use of ternary diagrams for paleoenvironmental reconstructions is demonstrated using the AOM-phytoclasts-palynomorph kerogen plot (after Tyson 1985, 1993). Liptinite-vitrinite-inertinite ratios can be utilized to analyze source rock potential (Dow 1982). In addition, Spore Color Index (SCI) and Thermal Alteration Index (TAI) can be used to estimate the maturity of sediments (Waples 1985).
Palynofacies yields a huge potential for geological problem solving, and its application in integrated studies can provide many exploitable synergies: It provides a bridge between biostratigraphy and sedimentology, and is also closely linked to organic petrography and organic geochemistry. Examples will be given to show the versatility of this method in conventional and unconventional settings.
Dow, W.G.1982: Kerogen maturity and type by reflected light microscopy applied to petroleum exploration, in: Staplin et al. (eds) How to assess maturation and paleotemperatures, Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists, Short Course 7, 133 - 57
Pittet, E. & Gorin, G.E., 1997: Distribution of sedimentary organic matter in a mixed carbonate siliciclastic platform environment: Oxfordian of the Swiss Jura Mountains. -Sedimentology, 44: 915 - 937.
Steffen, D. & Gorin, G.E., 1993: Sedimentology of organic matter in Upper Tithonian - Berriasian deep sea carbonates in Southeast France: Evidence of eustatic control. -In Katz, B & Bratt, L.: Source rock in a sequence stratigraphic framework. -AAPG Studies in Geology, 37: 39 - 65.
Waples, D., 1985, Geochemistry in Petroleum Exploration: Boston, IHRDC, 232 p.
AAPG Datapages/Search and Discovery Article #90350 © 2019 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition, San Antonio, Texas, May 19-22, 2019