Depositional Systems and Hydrocarbon Resource Potential of the Pennsylvanian System, Palo Duro and Dalhart Basins, Texas Panhan

Abstract
Pennsylvanian clastic and carbonate strata were deposited in a variety of environments within the Palo Duro Basin. Maximum accumulation (totaling 750 m or 2,400 ft) occurred along a northwest-southeast axis. Major facies include fan-delta sandstone and conglomerate, shelf and shelf-margin carbonate, deltaic sandstone and shale, and basinal shale and fine-grained sandstone. Erosion of Precambrian basement in the adjacent Amarillo and Sierra Grande Uplifts supplied arkosic sand (granite wash) to fan deltas along the northern margin of the basin. Distal fan-delta sandstones grade laterally and basinward into shallow-shelf limestone. Deep basinal shales were deposited only in a small area immediately north of the Matador Arch. Increased subsidence deepened and enlarged the basin throughout late Pennsylvanian time. Ultimately, the basin axis trended east-west with a narrow northwest extension. A carbonate shelf-margin complex having 60 to 120 m (200 to 400 ft) of depositional relief developed around the basin margin. The eastern shelf margin remained stationary, but the western shelf margin retreated landward throughout late Pennsylvanian time. Porous, dolomitized limestone occurs in a belt 16 to 32 km (10 to 20 mi) wide along the shelf margin. High-constructive elongate deltas prograded into the Palo Duro Basin from the east during late Pennsylvanian time. Prodelta mud and thin turbidite sands entered the basin through breaks in the eastern carbonate shelf margin. Potential hydrocarbon reservoirs are shelf-margin dolomite, fan-delta sandstone, and high-constructive delta sandstone. Basinal shales are fair to good hydrocarbon source rocks on the basis of total organic carbon content. Kerogen color and vitrinite reflectance data indicate that source beds may have reached the early stages of hydrocarbon maturation.
Authors
Shirley P. Dutton
Citation

Dutton, S. P., 1980, Depositional Systems and Hydrocarbon Resource Potential of the Pennsylvanian System, Palo Duro and Dalhart Basins, Texas Panhandle: The University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology, Geological Circular 80-8, 49 p. doi.org/10.23867/gc8008D.

ISSN
2475-3637
Number of figures
42
Number of pages
49
Publisher
The University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology
Series
Geological Circular
Year
1980