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Maikop/ diatom-productive series (!) petroleum system, South Caspian Basin, Azerbaijan



Maikop/ diatom-productive series (!) petroleum system, South Caspian Basin, Azerbaijan



Annual Meeting Expanded Abstracts - American Association of Petroleum Geologists 1998(1998



Analysis of more than 200 potential source rocks and 100 crude oils concludes that the primary hydrocarbon source rock is the Maikop/Diatom sequences of Miocene and Oligocene age. This dual source rock assignment is justified on molecular and isotopic evidence, along with stratigraphic complexities observed in outcrop intervals. The single genetic oil family is divided into three subtypes with a combined biomarker-isotope correlation technique. These subtypes correspond to subtle variations in the source rock facies that contribute to the hydrocarbon charge; the distribution of oil subtypes aids in the recognition of migration trends. Specific parameters used in the correlation include a terpane fraction with abundant pentacyclics that exponentially decrease with increasing carbon number, accompanied by minor to moderate amounts of gammacerane, oleanane (including des-A variety), 29,30-bisnorhopane, and the C24 tetracyclic terpane. The C30 diahopane, C29Ts, 2alpha (methyl)hopanes, and resinous biomarkers (e.g., bicadinanes) occur in minor to trace amounts. The tricyclic terpanes are dominated by the C23 and C24 members, whereas the C15 and C16 regular and rearranged drimanes dominate the bicyclic terpanes. The samples also contain minor amounts of the C25 highly branched isoprenoid (the diatom biomarker), beta -carotane, and aryl-isoprenoids. The carbon number distribution of the sterane fraction shows nearly equal numbers of C27, C28, and C29 members, but relatively low abundance of the C30 and rearranged series. The latter observation is also extended to include the ring-C monoaromatic steranes as well. The carbon isotopic composition of the oil saturate fraction range between -24.8 and -28.0 per mil, whereas the aromatic fraction ranges from -23.4 and -27.4 per mil. On the modified Sofer-plot, these oils plot below the best-fit line, consistent with oils of marine origin. In general, the oils produced from onshore fields are isotopically depleted compared to those produced from offshore fields. This data combined with variation on the molecular level, form the basis of the biomarker-isotope definition of three oil subtypes.

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