Palaeohydrodynamics of fluids in the Brent Group (Oseberg Field, Norwegian North Sea) from chemical and isotopic compositions of formation waters

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doi: 10.1016/S0883-2927(00)00057-3
Authors:Ziegler, Karen; Coleman, Max L.; Howarth, Richard J.
Author Affiliations:Primary:
University of Reading, Postgraduate Research Institute for Sedimentology, Reading, United Kingdom
University College London, London, United Kingdom
Volume Title:Applied Geochemistry
Source:Applied Geochemistry, 16(6), p.609-632. Publisher: Pergamon, Oxford-New York-Beijing, International. ISSN: 0883-2927
Publication Date:2001
Note:In English. 77 refs.; illus., incl. sect., 9 tables, sketch map
Summary:Generally, the history of past sub-surface fluid movements is difficult to reconstruct. However, the composition of oil-field waters characterizes the origins and mixing processes that allow such a reconstruction. We have investigated present-day formation waters from Brent Group sedimentary rocks of the Oseberg Field in order to assess both their geochemical variations, and their origin(s). Water samples (sampled at the separator) produced from immediately above the oil-water contact and from the aquifer (water-saturated zone below the oil-water contact) were taken from 11 wells across the field. In addition, 3 trace water samples were extracted from oil produced from higher up in the oil column. The water samples were analysed for their chemical components and isotopic compositions. Conservative tracers such as Cl, Br, δD, and δ18O were used to evaluate the origin of the waters. All formation waters can be characterised as Na-Cl-brines. The separator samples are of aquifer origin, indicating that aquifer water, drawn up by the pressure reduction near the well, is produced from the lower few tens of metres of the oil-zone. By defining plausible endmembers, the waters can be described as mixtures of seawater (60-90%), meteoric water (10-30%), evaporated seawater (primary brines) (3-5%), and possibly waters which have dissolved evaporites (secondary brines). Alternatively, using multidimensional scaling, the waters can be described as mixtures of only 3 endmembers without presupposing their compositions. In fact, they are seawater, very dilute brine, and a secondary brine (confirming the power of this approach). Meteoric water was introduced into the reservoir during the end-Brent and early-Cretaceous periods of emergence and erosion, and partially replaced the marine pore fluids. Lateral chemical variations across the Oseberg Field are extremely small. The waters from closer to the erosion surfaces show slightly stronger meteoric water isotopic signatures. The primary and secondary brines are believed to come from Permian and Triassic evaporitic rocks in the deeply buried Viking Graben to the west, and to have been modified by water-rock interactions along their migration path. These primary basinal brines have not been detected in the oil-zone waters, suggesting that the brines entered the reservoir after the main phase of oil-migration. There are indications that these external fluids were introduced into the reservoir along faults. Present-day aquifer waters are mixtures of waters from different origins and hardly vary at a field-scale. They are different in composition to the water trapped in the present oil-zone. One of the oil-zone samples is a very dilute brine. It is thought to represent a simple mixture of seawater and meteoric water. Due to oil-emplacement, this geochemical signature was preserved in the waters trapped within the oil-zone. Another oil-zone water shows a very similar chemical signature to the aquifer waters, but the chlorine isotopic signature is similar to that of the dilute oil-zone water. This water is interpreted to represent a palaeo-aquifer water. That is, it was within the aquifer zone in the past, but was trapped by subsequent emplacement of more oil. These vertical differences can be explained by two features: (i) emergence of the Brent Group sedimentary rocks in the Early Cretaceous allowed ingress of meteoric water; (ii) subsequent rapid burial of Viking Graben rocks caused migration of petroleum and aqueous fluids into the adjacent, less deeply buried Oseberg Field. Abstract Copyright (2001) Elsevier, B.V.
Subjects:Alkaline earth metals; Aquifers; Bajocian; Brent Group; Brines; Bromide ion; Bromine; Chloride ion; Chlorine; Cl-37/Cl-35; D/H; Geochemistry; Ground water; Halogens; Hydrochemistry; Hydrodynamics; Hydrogen; Isotope ratios; Isotopes; Jurassic; Mesozoic; Metals; Meteoric water; Middle Jurassic; Migration; Mixing; O-18/O-16; Oil and gas fields; Oil wells; Oil-water interface; Oxygen; Paleozoic; Permian; Petroleum; Saturated zone; Sea water; Solutes; Sr-87/Sr-86; Stable isotopes; Strontium; Tarbert Formation; Thickness; Triassic; Atlantic Ocean; Europe; North Atlantic; North Sea; Norway; Oseberg Field; Scandinavia; Viking Graben; Western Europe
Abstract Numbers:01M/4217
Record ID:2001032933
Copyright Information:GeoRef, Copyright 2019 American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from CAPCAS, Elsevier Scientific Publishers, Amsterdam, Netherlands
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