Bendias, D. and T. Aigner 2015. Facies, sequence stratigraphy, reservoir and seal potential of the Mafraq Formation, Sultanate of Oman: An integrated outcrop analogue study. GeoArabia, 2015, v. 20, no. 3, p. 17-94.


The mixed carbonate-siliciclastic Lower to Middle Jurassic Mafraq Formation unconformably overlies the Triassic Mahil Formation in outcrops of the Oman Mountains (pre-Mafraq Unconformity, known as pre-Marrat unconformity in other regions of Arabia). Together with the overlying Dhruma Formation, it is part of the Sahtan Group. This study provides: (1) a detailed facies analysis based on sedimentological logging of 12 outcrops. Twenty-four facies types were established and grouped into five facies associations, which can also be recognized in subsurface core intervals; (2) a detailed sequence-stratigraphic framework of the Mafraq Formation. Facies stacking and log patterns reveal cycle hierarchies on four scales from m-scale cycles, to several m-thick cycle sets, to tens of m-thick, high-frequency sequences, to 100 m-thick composite sequences; and (3) a documentation of potential reservoir and seal units. The study follows an approach from 1-D (outcrop sections) to 2-D (correlations and potential reservoir dimensions). The Mafraq outcrop type section, located in Wadi Sahtan is documented in an integrated way (facies, litho-, bio-, chemoand sequence stratigraphy), together with additional outcrops of the Mafraq Formation throughout North Oman. 2-D correlation of the Mafraq Formation throughout North Oman is essentially based on cycle sets and provides key information about the lateral paleogeographic development of the formation. A general proximal-distal trend, from south to north, has been proposed by Ziegler (2001); outcrop data from the Oman Mountains confirms this trend and adds an EW-deepening component. The mixed carbonate-clastic Lower Mafraq Member (Sequence) with a coastal/estuarine to shallow-marine environment forms onlaps onto the pre-Mafraq Unconformity below, and thins out completely after some 10s of kilometers towards the southeast. The Upper Mafraq Member (Sequence) seems to be continuous over 10s of kilometers with less thickness decrease. Instead, a transition from a more distal carbonate shoal - backshoal environment in the northwest to a proximal clastic coastal/estuarine/terrestrial environment in the southeast can be observed. On a 100s km-scale significant thinning and a change towards terrestrial clastic facies can be observed southeast of the Oman Mountains area. Combined results from lateral/vertical logging, paleoenvironmental interpretations and correlation provided 3-D information about the dimensions of potential reservoir and seal units. Several potential reservoir/seal intervals and their dimensions in dip direction could be identified: (1) Lower Mafraq Sequence: various types of sandbodies, most of them with a lateral extent ca. 5 km, sealed by shales. (2) Upper Mafraq Sequence, northwestern part: oolitic grainstones, laterally correlative over 10–20 km, sealed by shales. (3) Upper Mafraq Sequence, southeastern part: channelized sandstones units, lateral extent up to km, sealed by shales.

MEGREF : 16317
Publication Year : 2015
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