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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 65 (1981)

Issue: 5. (May)

First Page: 903

Last Page: 903

Title: Geochemistry of Mississippian and Devonian Oil Shales of Northeastern Kentucky: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Alan E. Bland, Thomas L. Robl, David W. Koppenaal

Article Type: Meeting abstract


Detailed chemical analyses were conducted on 10 cores drilled in Lewis and Fleming Counties of Kentucky in an oil-shale resource assessment funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The stratigraphic units studied include the Sunbury Shale and the Ohio Shale, which is divided (from top to bottom) into the Cleveland Member, the Three Lick Bed, and the Huron Member. The chemical analyses include C, H, N, S, major element oxide, and trace-element determinations from 760 samples.

Carbon concentration was found to increase from top to bottom in the Sunbury Shale and Huron Member, and decrease in the Cleveland Member of the Ohio Shale. Average carbon concentrations were 11%, 6%, and 9% by weight in these intervals, respectively. Oil yield was determined by Fischer-assay and a good correlation with carbon was found. The Cleveland produced approximately 10% more oil per unit of carbon than the Sunbury. Although C, H, N, and S showed significant stratigraphic variability, the distribution patterns for these elements were found to be highly correlatable. The only systematic geographic variation of note was a 15% increase in hydrogen concentration in the Sunbury and Huron from north to south in the study area.

The Sunbury Shale was the least siliceous of the stratigraphic intervals and had the highest concentration of trace elements. Trace elements could be placed into four groups based on major element affinities: (1) those elements that showed strong association with carbon (Cu, Cr); (2) those with a weaker association with carbon (Ni, V, U); (3) those with an affinity for sulfur (Co, Mo, Pb, Zn); and (4) those with an inorganic affinity (Ba, Rb, Sr, Zn).

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists