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Characterization of Bedded Salt
for Storage Caverns

Case Study from the Midland Basin

Susan D. Hovorka
Bureau of Economic Geology
The University of Texas at Austin

Introduction to the Problem
   • About Solution-Mined Caverns
   • Geology of Salt
   • Purpose, Scope, and Methods of Our Study
   • Previous Work: Geologic Setting of the Bedded Salt in the      Permian Basin 

Stratigraphic Units and Type Logs
   • Midland Basin Stratigraphy
      – Seven Rivers and Yates Formations
      – Salado and Tansill Formations
      – Salado Insoluble Residue, Alibates, and Dewey Lake          Formations
   • Delaware Basin Stratigraphy
   • Relationships between Midland and Delaware Basin Units

Stratigraphic Cross Sections
   • North–South Cross Section
   • East–West Cross Section
   • Discussion of Cross Sections

   • Structure Below the Salt Section
   • Structure Above the Salt Section
   • Thickness of the Salt Section
   • Depth to Salt
   • Salt Quality and Net Salt

Evaluation of Salt: Geologic Processes
   • Deposition of Salt
   • Base-of-cycle Dissolution
   • Post-Permian Salt Dissolution under Burial Conditions
   • Focused Dissolution and Collapse
   • Timing of Salt Dissolution under Burial Conditions

Case Studies
   • Case Study 1: Permian Facies Controls on the North
      Margin of the Midland Basin

   • Case Study 2: Post-Permian Dissolution at a Structural       Positive on the Eastern Basin Margin
   • Case Study 3: Post-Permian Dissolution over the Central       Basin Platform in the Pecos Valley Area
   • Case Study 4: Post-Permian Dissolution over the Capitan       Reef

Methods for Site Evaluation




Downloadable Files in Adobe PDF Format


This research was funded by the
National Petroleum Technology Center
U.S. Department of Energy
Bartlesville, Oklahoma
Contract No. DE-AF26-97BC15030