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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 69 (1985)

Issue: 2. (February)

First Page: 308

Last Page: 308

Title: Petroleum Potential and Stratigraphy of Holitna Basin, Alaska: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Thomas N. Smith, James G. Clough, John F. Meyer, Robert B. Blodgett

Article Type: Meeting abstract


The Holitna basin, an interior Alaskan basin, is flanked by Cambrian to Cretaceous sedimentary rocks that have been highly folded and faulted. Gravity mapping and modeling indicate up to 15,000 ft of sedimentary section is present within the basin.

Cambrian rocks consist of trilobite-hash lime mudstone, red siltstone, and basinal chert. Ordovician through Devonian basinal facies rocks consist of platy limestone to graptolitic shale with minor interbeds of limestone turbidites and turbidite-channel debris flows. Ordovician through Middle Devonian shallow-water platform carbonate rocks prograde over the basinal rocks and are composed of algal boundstone buildups with associated inboard lagoonal, oolitic shoal, and tidal-channel deposits. Toward the interior of the platform, restricted subtidal and intertidal to supratidal carbonate rocks were deposited. Upper Devonian to Permian platform carbonate deposition occurred to the east of the older platform rocks and conformably(?) over basinal rocks. Minor mixed carbonate-clastic deposi ion occurred into Triassic time.

The Cretaceous Kuskokwim Group is in fault contact with and/or unconformably overlies the Paleozoic carbonates. This unit varies from lithic-rich conglomerates to marine turbidite deposits. Maturation values for Cretaceous and Paleozoic rocks are within the oil window, with most of the shales showing a thermal alteration index (TAI) from 2 to 3. Organic carbon content exceeds 3% in some samples, however, deep surface weathering has resulted in low hydrocarbon values. The lithic-rich Cretaceous sandstones are well indurated, poorly sorted, and are considered to have low reservoir potential. Partly dolomitized, shallow-water Ordovician to Devonian carbonate rocks are the best potential reservoir rocks exhibiting vuggy porosities greater than 10% and good intergranular porosity.

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists