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Chemical and isotopic characterization of hydrocarbon gas traces in porewater of very low permeability rocks: The example of the Callovo-Oxfordian argillites of the eastern part of the Paris Basin

Abstract : A methodology has been developed to determine chemical and carbon isotopic compositions of trace amounts of hydrocarbon gas compounds (methane, ethane, propane, iso- and normal-butane) present as dissolved compounds in the porewater of the low permeability Callovo-Oxfordian argillites in eastern Paris Basin, France. Results indicate that the studied hydrocarbons contain significant amounts of ethane, butane and propane, in addition to methane. Carbon isotopic compositions reflect primarily thermogenic origin (thermal cracking of organic matter), and lack of any significant biodegradation. Because temperature did not exceed 50 °C in the studied argillites, investigated hydrocarbons must have originated in hotter/deeper organic-bearing formations, possibly Stephanian coals. Data supports the predominance of high maturity thermogenic gas in the upper part of the Callovo-Oxfordian, and low maturity thermogenic gas mixed with minor bacterially produced methane in the lower part of the formation. A mixing between three end-member gases models quite well the data: one thermogenic gas with a low maturity (42% methane, with a δ13C of − 53‰), a gas with higher maturity (55% methane, with a δ13C of − 47‰) and a bacterial gas (99.45% methane, with a δ13C of − 80‰). This study illustrates that migration of hydrocarbon gases can take place in rocks with very low permeability and porosity, such as compacted mudrocks, given enough time. It further suggests that the studied fluid migration and transfer in aquitards would help characterization and understanding of fluid movements in sedimentary basins, as a complement to studies focused on water aquifers and hydrocarbon reservoirs. Chemical and isotopic composition of dissolved hydrocarbons in porewater can be used as natural tracers of fluid circulation in sedimentary basins, in addition to more conventional tracers.
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https://hal-brgm.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00514407
Contributeur : Maxime Haldric <>
Soumis le : jeudi 2 septembre 2010 - 11:23:58
Dernière modification le : mercredi 8 juillet 2020 - 17:16:04

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Alain Prinzhofer, Jean-Pierre Girard, Stéphane Buschaert, Yvon Huiban, Sonia Noirez. Chemical and isotopic characterization of hydrocarbon gas traces in porewater of very low permeability rocks: The example of the Callovo-Oxfordian argillites of the eastern part of the Paris Basin. Chemical Geology, Elsevier, 2009, 260 (3-4), p. 269-277. ⟨10.1016/j.chemgeo.2008.12.021⟩. ⟨hal-00514407⟩

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