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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Special Volumes


Pub. Id: A122 (1977)

First Page: 4

Last Page: 4

Book Title: CN 5: Geology of Continental Margins

Article/Chapter: Petroleum Potential of Blake Plateau-Bahama Region of the Atlantic Margin of North America

Subject Group: Geologic History and Areal Geology

Spec. Pub. Type: Course Notes

Pub. Year: 1977

Author(s): Robert E. Sheridan


Great thicknesses of Triassic and younger sediments are observed seismically in the Blake Plateau-Bahama area. Basement is thought to be from 7 to 14 km deep below high velocity carbonates. Ridge-like reflectors along the Blake Escarpment are found by drilling to be Cretaceous reefal rim-complexes. Deep wells indicate that this rim facies extends southeast along the Bahama Platform margin. The Gulf Stream apparently has swept the continually subsiding Blake Plateau during much of the Cenozoic creating this deeper water area; while contour currents eroded the Blake-Bahama Escarpment and deposited muds to form the Blake-Bahama Outer Ridge. Deep water Bahamian channels developed in the Cretaceous and Cenozoic between the accreting carbonate banks; while Jurassic salt has app rently domed in Exuma Sound.

The crustal type, oceanic vs. continental, beneath the Blake Plateau-Bahamas is still problematic. Other geophysical data indicate that the igneous basement is about 10 km deep and that the crust is of intermediate seismic velocity and density. Red Sea - Afar Triangle crustal types might be the modern analog, agreeing with Plate-tectonic reconstructions and the Atlantic Margin rifting in Triassic-Jurassic.

The Blake-Bahama area has great petroleum potential. Fault structures, regional tilting over reef-complexes, and possible salt domes are good for traps. Porous dolomite horizons and cavernous limestones have been drilled, but flushing of these excellent reservoirs is unfavorable for Cretaceous and younger rocks. Jurassic carbonate targets offer potential reserves with carbonate sources being likely. Mexican Golden Lane - Poza Rica fields and Smackover analogies are possible.

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