From Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin (www.beg.utexas.edu).
For more information, please contact the author.

Bureau Seminar, April 4, 2003

Definition of the Geological Framework of the Neogene in the Southern Laguna Madre-Tuxpan Continental Shelf of Eastern Mexico

William Ambrose

Abstract:

An 18-month study of the Laguna Madre-Tuxpan area conducted by the Bureau of Economic Geology and Pemex Exploración y Producción will define major Miocene and Pliocene gas plays in the offshore Gulf of Mexico to a water depth of 500 m. The study area covers six 3-D surveys (>7,000 km2) and >8,000 linear km of 2-D seismic lines and links the Veracruz and Burgos Basins.

Laguna Madre-Tuxpan plays are structurally and stratigraphically complex, affording a unique opportunity to examine a complete coast-to-basin succession from valley fill to basin floor over a distance of less than 25 km. A dynamic, tectonically active setting coupled with an abundant sediment supply resulted in a greatly telescoped dip-dispersal system. Narrow shelf margins in the Laguna Madre-Tuxpan area represent an end member in the spectrum of shelf-margin types and promise to be of significant worldwide interest.

Plays in the Laguna Madre-Tuxpan study are defined from mappable geologic attributes. This study uses a threefold definition for plays based on (1) sequence-stratigraphic occurrence and age, (2) facies association, and (3) trap. A variety of plays and exploration opportunities exist in downdip areas in basin-floor and slope systems. Other areas in major fault-bounded depocenters contain numerous three-way fault-seal opportunities at many stratigraphic levels. Identification and mapping of these plays will yield a structural and stratigraphic framework for existing prospects and holds promise to identify a spectrum of additional opportunities in the basin.