Shale gas resources have been regarded as a viable energy source, and it is of great significance to characterize the shale composition of different cements, such as quartz and dolomite. In this research, chemical analysis and the multifractal method have been used to study the mineral compositions and petrophysical structures of cements in shale samples from the Longmaxi Formation, China. X-ray diffraction, electron microprobe, field emission scanning electron microscopy, cathodoluminescence microscopy and C-O isotope analyses confirmed that cements in the Longmaxi Formation shales are mainly composed of Fe-bearing dolomite and quartz. Fe-bearing dolomite cements concentrate around dolomite as annuli, filling micron-sized inorganic primary pores. Quartz cements in the form of nanoparicles fill primary inter-crystalline pores among clay minerals. Theoretical calculation shows that the Fe-bearing dolomite cements formed slightly earlier than the quartz cements, but both were related to diagenetic illitization of smectite. Moreover, multifractal analysis reveals that the quartz cements are more irregularly distributed in pores than the Fe-bearing dolomite cements. These results suggest that the plugging effect of the quartz cements on the primary inoraganic pore structures is the dominant factor resulting in low interconnected porosity of shales, which are unfavorable for the enrichment of shale gas.
The genetic type and accumulation model of the Devonian reservoirs in the Marsel Block remain unclear, despite decades of exploration history. According to the well testing, logging interpretations and sample testing results, the Devonian natural gas reservoir in the Marsel Block has five typical characteristics:(1) It is obvious that the traps contain continuous gas accumulations. Not only the apexes of the structures are enriched in natural gas, but also the slopes and depressions contain gas accumulations. (2) The gas reservoirs are classified as tight reservoirs, but there are also reservoirs with high porosity and permeability in some areas. (3) The general negative or low-pressure in the gas reservoir is obvious, although the pressure in the target layers of some wells is close to normal. (4) The yields of single wells in the Devonian reservoir are quite different:some wells have low yields or are dry, whereas the gas production from high-yield wells has reached 700 000 m3/day. (5) The gas-water relationship is complicated:there is no obvious gas-water interface, but the water-producing layer is generally located at the apexes of structures. Research and analysis have shown that using the model of the conventional gas reservoirs genetic type can only explain the characteristics of parts of the gas reservoir, while the model of accumulation in a deep-basin gas reservoir cannot fully explain the distribution characteristics of the Devonian reservoir. However, the model of accumulation in a stacked complex continuous oil and gas reservoir can reasonably explain the geological and distribution characteristics of the Devonian reservoir. Moreover, the predicted gas distribution along a cross-section of the reservoir is also in agreement with the geological background and tectonic environment of the Marsel Block, therefore, the genetic type of the Devonian natural gas reservoir in the Marsel Block is a stacked complex continuous tight-gas reservoir. Finally, by comprehensively analyzing the source rock, reservoir and cap rocks, as well as the structural characteristics, it is verified that Devonian in the Marsel Block has favorable geological conditions for formation of a superimposed continuous tight gas reservoir.
Karst in interbedded carbonates and evaporites has been reported to have important and complex impacts on reservoir. It is significant for exploration and karst geology. Here, we report such a new case from Middle Triassic Leikoupo Formation of Sichuan Basin, Southwest China. Stratigraphic incom-pleteness and the occurrence of unconformity provide evidence for the presence of eogenetic karst. Under the impact of this eogenetic karst, residual weathered and solution-collapse breccia, solution pores and silicification and dedolomitization have been observed. Classic stratigraphic zonation of karst is not readily distinguishable, which is ascribed to the stratigraphic collapse of carbonate rocks resulting from the dissolution of evaporites by lateral subsurface fluid flow. In terms of impact on reservoir quality, karst can generally improve the initial physical property of the porous layers in theory. However, subsurface fluid flow dissolved the evarporitic beds and facilitated the collapse of overlying strata. As a consequence, the lateral continuity of the reservoirs would be destroyed, and relatively high-quality reservoirs can only be developed with little collapse of overlying strata, reflecting reservoir heterogeneities. This may be a general feature of reservoir formation under the impact of karst in interbedded carbonates and evaporites.
Coronitic microstructures have been used to interpret the late-stage solidification history of igneous rocks and to constrain the corresponding chemical and/or physical changes. Coronas with three shells were also recognized in the Miaowan olivine norite, Yangtze Craton, South China. In our study, orthopyroxene intergrowth with vermicular magnetite in the inner shell is in optical continuity with magnetite-free orthopyroxene in the middle shell. In the outer shell of brown amphibole remaining magnetite-free orthopyroxene inclusions sporadically occur. Meanwhile Mg# values of orthopyroxene (76-80) in the inner and middle shells are basically consistent with olivine (78-81). In this paper, we propose a multi-stage genetic model for the formation of coronas in the Miaowan olivine norite. In the first stage, the magnetite-free orthopyroxene shell formed through reaction between primocrystal olivine with the residual Si-rich melt at 990-1 053 ℃ and 6.2-6.5 kbar. In the second stage, the orthopyroxene-magnetite symplectite shell formed when primocrystal olivine reacted with the late-stage residual Fe-rich melt promoted by high oxygen fugacity condition at 927-1 035 ℃ and 6.0-6.5 kbar. In the third stage, the brown amphibole shell formed as the presence of residual hydrous melt and replaced the middle shell at 821-900 ℃ and 5.5-6.0 kbar.
The geological units in Shandong Province, North China are important parts of the North China Craton and offer important insights into their crustal evolutionary history. This paper presents 611 sets of Nd isotopic data of Archean-Mesozoic rocks from Shandong including the Luxi, Jiaobei, and Sulu terranes, which provides important constraints for crustal growth and reactivation. Nd-depleted mantle model ages (TDM) of Archean rocks with positive εNd(t) values showed that ca. 2.9 and 2.8-2.7 Ga were the most important periods of crustal growth in the Jiaobei and Luxi terranes, respectively, while the period of ca. 2.6-2.5 Ga in the Jiaobei terrane likely indicates a coherent event of crustal growth and reworking. During the Proterozoic, multi-stage rifting and collisional orogenic events possibly led to the reworking of Archean crust in the source region. The Nd isotopic data of the Paleoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic rocks from Sulu indicated significant reworking of older crust with juvenile magmatic input. Crustal reactivation occurred during the Mesozoic. The younger TDM ages of the Mesozoic rocks with low negative εNd(t) values indicate that a juvenile crustal/mantle component was added to the ancient basement. The reactivation reflectes significant crust-mantle interaction via the mechanism of crustal subduction and mantle-derived magma underplating, or possibly asthenospheric upwelling. In addition, the crustal correlation between Shandong and Korea (including the Gyeonggi massif, Ogcheon belt, and Yeongnam massif) is established in this study. The TDM age distribution provides evidence favoring the affinity relationship between the Gyeonggi massif and Ogcheon belt of South Korea and the Jiaobei and Sulu terranes of Shandong, while the Yeongnam massif is more correlated with the South China Block.
Electron probe microanalysis (EPMA) dating of monazite has been developed over decades. However, limited by the detectability and analytical sensitivity of dating-related elements (Th, Pb, U and Y), the EPMA dating has been restricted to geological research. In this study, various probe currents, beam diameters and counting times have been utilized on a JEOL JXA-8230 electron microprobe to determine the optimal experimental conditions for measuring Th, Pb, U and Y in monazite. The optimal conditions are:(1) accelerating voltage is 15 kV; (2) probe current is 100 nA; (3) beam diameter is 1 μm; (4) the peak and background counting time of U and Pb are 200 and 100 s; and (5) the peak and background counting time of Th and Y are 100 and 50 s. We apply this method to monazite from garnet-bearing biotite gneiss in the Zanhuang area of the Central Orogenic Belt of the North China Craton. The PbO-ThO2* isochron age calculated by EPMA data is 1 812±17 Ma (MSWD=2.06), which is similar to the weighted mean 207Pb/206Pb age (1 805±12 Ma, MSWD=1.07) obtained by LA-ICP-MS. This study suggests that EPMA dating of monazite as a powerful dating technique can be widely used in geochronological study.
In-situ powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectra were measured on the natural crystals of calcite (Ca0.996Mg0.004CO3), dolomite (Ca0.497Mg0.454Fe0.046Mn0.003CO3) and magnesite (Mg0.988Ca0.010Fe0.002CO3), with a temperature up to 796 K. The thermal expansion coeffi-cients were evaluated for these carbonate minerals, resulting in the values of 2.7×10-5, 3.3×10-5 and 3.5×10-5 K-1 for calcite, dolomite and magnesite, respectively. The magnitude of these coefficients is in the same order as those for the isothermal and elastic moduli of these carbonates (e.g., calcite < dolomite < magnesite). The IR-active internal modes of the CO3 group systematically shift to lower frequencies at elevated temperature, and the isobaric (γiP) and isothermal (γiT) Grüneisen parameters for the internal modes are generally smaller than 0.5. The corresponding anharmonic parameters (ai) are typically within the range of -1.5-+1×10-5 K-1, which are significantly smaller in magnitude than those for the external modes. We also calculate the thermodynamic properties (internal energy, heat capacities and entropy) at high temperatures for these carbonates, and the anharmonic contribution to thermodynamics shows an order of calcite > dolomite > magnesite. The Debye model (harmonic approximation) would be valid for magnesite to simulating the thermodynamic properties and isotope fractionation β-factor at high P-T condition.
The end-Permian to Early-Middle Triassic magmatic rocks in Inner Mongolia can provide valuable insights into the relationships between the collisional processes and the magmatic responses during the final orogenic evolution of Xing-Meng orogenic belt (XMOB). This paper presents zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopes, whole rock geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic data for the Early-Middle Triassic diabases and monzogranites from the Langshan area, southwestern XMOB. Our results suggest that the studied diabases and monzogranites were respectively formed during Early Triassic and Middle Triassic. The Early Triassic diabases are characterized by "arc-like" geochemical signatures, including enrichment in Rb, U and K, and depletion in Nb, Ta, P and Ti. They have negative to weak positive εNd(t) values (-3.1 to +1.5) and relatively high initial ratios of 208Pb/204Pb (35.968-37.346), 207Pb/204Pb (15.448-15.508) and 206Pb/204Pb (16.280-17.492), indicating a subduction-metasomatized enriched lithospheric mantle source. Their low Ba/Rb (2.72-6.56), Ce/Y (0.97-1.39) and (Tb/Yb)N ratios (1.31-1.45) suggest that the parental magma was likely originated from low degree partial melting of the phlogopite-bearing lherzolite in a spinel- stability field. The Middle Triassic monzogranites show high Sr/Y ratios, low MgO, Cr and Ni contents, high Zr/Sm ra-tios (40-64), negative zircon εHf(t) values (-25.8 to -8.8), as well as relatively flat heavy rare earth element patterns. They were likely derived from low degree partial melting of a moderately thickened ancient lower crust. The diabases and the slightly postdated high Sr/Y granites in this study represent the magmatic responses to the final orogenic evolution in the southwestern XMOB. To-gether with regional works, we propose that the slab break-off of the Paleo-Asian oceanic lithosphere following the terminal collision between the North China Craton and the South Mongolia terranes triggered asthenospheric upwelling, and the ongoing convergence further initiated moderately crustal thickening and uplift in the XMOB.
The Sanjiang Tethys orogenic belt is located in the southeast side of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. It has undergone the opening and closing movements in different periods of Tethys oceans, complex accretive orogeny and strong mineralization from Paleozoic to Mesozoic. Using zircon fission track (ZFT) thermochronology, this study reveals the Sanjiang Tethys has experienced multi-stage tectonic activities during the Late Triassic-Cenozoic. The 15 ZFT ages with their decomposition components obtained from Sanjiang Tethysian region range from 212 to 19 Ma, which not only shows 6 age groups of 212, 179-172, 156-133, 121-96, 84-70 and 50-19 Ma, but also constrains the age limit of the tectonothermal events. These age groups recorded the Paleo-Tethys main and branches ocean opening/closure time. The age-elevation plot indicates the Sanjiang region had differential uplifting and exhumation and fast uplifting times of ca. 133, 116 and 80 Ma, coinciding with the age groups mentioned above. These results show new geochronological evidences and viewpoints.
We apply a novel method to estimate the magnitude of the 23 January 2018 M7.9 Alaska earthquake using seismic stations recorded at local to regional distances in Alaska, US. We determine the source duration from back-projection results derived from the Alaska stations in a relatively compact azimuth range. Then we calculate the maximum P-wave displacements recorded on a wide azimuth range at distances of 8 to 15 degrees. Combining the source duration and the maximum P-wave displacements, we obtain magnitudes of 7.86-8.03 for the 23 January 2018 earthquake in 3-5 min, very close to the Mw7.9 determined by the USGS and GCMT. This example validates the new approach for determining magnitude of large earthquakes using local to regional stations, and its time efficiency that magnitudes of large earthquakes can be accurately estimated within in 3-5 min after origin time. Therefore, further application of this new method would help accurate estimation of size of earthquakes that occur offshore and might cause tsunami hazards.
Mineral resources are the most important natural resources for developing countries. Bauxite is an indispensable mineral resource for industrial production. Potential assessment of bauxite is an im-portant issue in Indochina Peninsula. In this paper, the factors affecting the mineralization of the lateritic bauxite are analyzed. The collected spatial data are processed and the information is extracted to obtain the spatial extent of favorable constraints. Then, the spatial distribution of potential bauxites on the Bolaven Plateau has been investigated with a Boolean modeling process in GIS environment on the basis of some constraints such as rock, elevation, topographical features and vegetation coverage. Finally, based on the hydrogeological conditions and alteration information of Fe3+ and OH-, the bauxite mapping has been carried out. There are twenty bauxite metallogenic areas delineated, with a total area of 750 km2, which is 5% of the entire study area. This has greatly reduced the scope of the field investigation. Seven of the twenty predicted areas were validated in the field and six of them were found to have bauxite mineralization. Using the methods proposed in this study, the potential bauxite for the entire Bolaven Plateau could be achieved much more cheaply than the traditional methods. This study also provides a good idea for the prediction of laterite bauxite in the other regions of the Indochina Peninsula.
This paper presents the landslide hazard assessment and slope-failure function using two Newmark displacement models regressed by regional and global station records. Taking the 2008 Wenchuan Mw7.9 earthquake area as an example, based on the topographic and geological data of the study area, we prepared a factor-of-safety (Fs) map and a critical acceleration (ac) map, respectively. Then using these two simplified Newmark models, two displacement maps were compiled by combining the ac map and peak ground acceleration (PGA) map. By virtue of the actual landslide inventory of the Wenchuan earthquake, we constructed the slope-failure probability curves of the two Newmark models. The results show that the abilities to predict landslide occurrence of the two simplified Newmark models are largely identical, by which the assessment results can well delineate the macroscopic distribution of coseismic landslides, and most predicted landslide cells are distributed on the two sides of the Beichuan-Yingxiu fault, especially Pengguan complex rock mass in the hanging wall of this fault. The probability equations of two Newmark models are roughly the same, though the parameters vary slightly. The probability equation proposed in this paper can be applied to the Wenchuan region and other areas with similar tectonic environments.
Late Mesozoic granitoids are widespread in the Great Xing'an Range (GXR), which is part of a large igneous province in eastern China. The geodynamic setting of the Late Mesozoic granitoids is still debated, and there have been two dominant models proposed, subduction and thermal erosion. This study discusses the geodynamic mechanisms from a new perspective on ages of the granitoids and fractal dimensions of their shape. Our results show that granitoids become gradually older from South GXR to North GXR to Erguna Block (EB) in the Jurassic, and opposite in the Cretaceous. The fractal dimensions of the Perimeter-area model (DAP) exhibit the same features. The values of DAP are smaller from South GXR (0.673 1) to North GXR (0.628 0) to EB (0.607 9) in the Jurassic, and larger from South GXR (0.609 6) to North GXR (0.630 2) to EB (0.639 9) in the Cretaceous. This implies that the geometrical irregularities of the granitoids are shaped by subduction rather than thermal erosion. These spatial variations could be best explained by the subduction of the Pacific Plate and consequent granitoid magmatism in the Late Mesozoic, thus providing a new fractal evidence for Pacific Plate subduction mechanism and opening a new possibility method for studing plate movement.
The enclosure and ungrazing practices for grassland management result in accumulation of plant litter on soil surface thus affecting the available soil water and nutrients for plant production. We experimentally investigated the effects of litter on soil properties and plant growth in a prolonged enclosure grassland of Loess Plateau, China. Three different litter manipulations were conducted including removal of all litter, an untreated in-situ control with original litter levels, and a double litter treatment. Litter treatment experiments demonstrated that plant litter affected the superficial soil water. Soil water content in plots with in-situ or double litter is generally higher than that with litter removal. The depletion of soil water up to five days post rainfall is fastest in litter removal plots for the top soil, but no evident difference for the deep ones. Different litter treatments have no significant impact on soil total carbon, nitrogen as well as carbon/nitrogen ratio for consecutive two years experiments. Both above- and below-ground biomasses in plots of litter removal were less than those in the plots of in-situ and double litter treatment. Litter affects plant production mainly through the mechanical barrier regulating root zone soil moisture. Therefore, prolonged litter manipulation experiments are desirable to understand the long-term response of plant growth on litter from nutrient aspect.
Over 600 chloride-bearing deposits (chlorides) have been identified on the southern highlands of Mars. These chlorides have critical implications for hydrology and astrobiology:they are indicators of an evaporating super saturated solution, and they could have provided habitat environments for halophilic microorganisms and preserved organic matter. One of the prominent geomorphology characteristics of these chloride- bearing regions is the polygonal features within them. The origin of these polygonal features is still in debate. In this study, we have surveyed 153 locations of chlorides using 441 high resolution imaging science experiment (HiRISE) images to characterize the geomorphology of polygonal features. We identified 3 types of polygonal features of distinct geomorphologic characteristics:fractures, raised ridges, and transitional polygons between fractures and raised ridges. We evaluate previously proposed hypotheses of the formation of the polygonal features, and suggest that the 3 types of polygonal features are indicators of different stages of salt crust formation. Salt crust is usually formed through multiple groundwater activities, and it often occurs in playa environment on Earth. The unique hydrological and astrobiological implications of the chlorides with polygonal features make these deposits of high priority for future landed on and/or sample return exploration missions of Mars.
Deep-water facies sections have advantages of recording complete information across the Permian-Triassic boundary (PTB). Here we present a detailed study on the conodont biostratigraphy and carbon isotope profile ranges from the Wuchiapingian-Changhsingian boundary (WCB) to the PTB of two deep-water facies sections at Zhuqiao and Shiligou in the Middle Yangtze region, western Hubei, South China. Fifteen species and three genera are identified. Eight conodont zones are recog-nized which in ascending order are the Clarkina orientalis, C. wangi, C. subcarinata, C. changxingensis, C. yini, C. meishanensis, Hindeodus parvus and Isarcicella isarcica zones. The onset of deposition of the deep-water siliceous strata of Dalong Formation in western Hubei began in the Late Wuchiapingian and persisted to the Late Changhsingian. Carbon isotope negative excursions occur near both the WCB and PTB in both sections. The WCB δ13Ccarb negative excursion is in the C. orientalis and C. wangi zones. The PTB δ13Ccarb negative excursion began in the C. yini Zone and extended to the I. isarcica Zone. The absence of several Changhsingian zones may indicate the difficulty of extracting conodonts from siliceous strata or the presence of an intra-Changhsingian hiatus.