Geothermal Regime And Jurassic Source Rock Maturity Of The Junggar Basin, Northwest China

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Journal Article: Geothermal Regime And Jurassic Source Rock Maturity Of The Junggar Basin, Northwest China

We analyze the thermal gradient distribution of the Junggar basin based on oil-test and well-logging temperature data. The basin-wide average thermal gradient in the depth interval of 0-4000 m is 22.6°C/km, which is lower than other sedimentary basins in China. We report 21 measured terrestrial heat flow values based on detailed thermal conductivity data and systematical steady-state temperature data. These values vary from 27.0 to 54.1 mW/m2 with a mean of 41.8 ± 7.8 mW/m2. The Junggar basin appears to be a cool basin in terms of its thermal regime. The heat flow distribution within the basin shows the following characteristics. (1) The heat flow decreases from the Luliang Uplift to the Southern Depression; (2) relatively high heat flow values over 50 mW/m2 are confined to the northern part of the Eastern Uplift and the adjacent parts of the Eastern Luliang Uplift and Central Depression; (3) The lowest heat flow of smaller than 35 mW/m2 occurs in the southern parts of the basin. This low thermal regime of the Junggar basin is consistent with the geodynamic setting, the extrusion of plates around the basin, the considerably thick crust, the dense lithospheric mantle, the relatively stable continental basement of the basin, low heat generation and underground water flow of the basin. The heat flow of this basin is of great significance to oil exploration and hydrocarbon resource assessment, because it bears directly on issues of petroleum source-rock maturation. Almost all oil fields are limited to the areas of higher heat flows. The relatively low heat flow values in the Junggar basin will deepen the maturity threshold, making the deep-seated widespread Permian and Jurassic source rocks in the Junggar basin favorable for oil and gas generation. In addition, the maturity evolution of the Lower Jurassic Badaowan Group (J1b) and Middle Jurassic Xishanyao Group (J2x) were calculated based on the thermal data and burial depth. The maturity of the Jurassic source rocks of the Central Depression and Southern Depression increases with depth. The source rocks only reached an early maturity with a R0 of 0.5-0.7% in the Wulungu Depression, the Luliang Uplift and the Western Uplift, whereas they did not enter the maturity window (R0 < 0.5%) in the Eastern Uplift of the basin. This maturity evolution will provide information of source kitchen for the Jurassic exploration.

Qiu Nansheng, Zhang Zhihuan and Xu Ershe

Published Journal 
Journal of Asian Earth Sciences, 2008



Qiu Nansheng,Zhang Zhihuan,Xu Ershe. 2008. Geothermal Regime And Jurassic Source Rock Maturity Of The Junggar Basin, Northwest China. Journal of Asian Earth Sciences. (!) .