Datapages, Inc.Print this page

Petrology and Diagenetical Processes in the Hawaz Formation, a Middle Ordovician Clastic Reservoir of the Murzuq Basin, Libya


Barsó, Dolors1, David Gómez-Gras2, Mariano Marzo1, Emilio Ramos1, Khairi Tawenki3, Nestor Bolatti4 (1) University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain (2) Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Bellaterra, Spain (3) REMSA, Trípoli, Libya (4) Repsol YPF, Spain


The Hawaz Formation is a Llanvirnian-Llandeilian aged oil bearing detritic unit which constitutes a part of the Paleozoic sedimentary infill in the Murzuq and Kufrah basins, in Central and South Libya. It crops out in the basin margins as tectonic uplifts. This work is based on outcrops of the Gargaf high, in the northerly boundary of the Murzuq Basin, where the Hawaz Formation is mainly composed of sandstones deposited in shallow marine, shoreface and estuarine environments and include a number of thin beds of vol­canic ash.

The Hawaz Formation sandstones are fine to medium grained, well sorted and sub­rounded with low matrix contents. Compositionally, these sandstones are mainly quartzarenites made up of quartz grains and minor amounts of K-feldspar, plagioclase, mica and metamorphic rock fragments. Primary porosity is mostly intergranular and ranges from 0 to 22.5 % having the highest values towards the lower part of the Formation. Secondary porosity is uncommon. Diagenetic processes promote the reduction of initial intergranular porosity via precipitation of authigenic minerals and chemical and mechani­cal compaction.

The diagenetic sequence starts with the precipitation of early quartz and minor K­feldspar overgrowths prior to the development of mechanical and chemical compaction. Ferruginous coatings precipitated subsequently to this compaction, followed by the neofor­mation of clay minerals (illite-smectite and kaolinite). Finally, dolomite cement filled the residual porosity. However, the main reduction of the primary porosity was produced by chemical and mechanical compaction. The highest compaction values have been measured in the middle and upper parts of the Formation.