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Salt Systems of the Earth: Distribution, Tectonic and Kinematic History, Salt-Naphthids Interrelations, Discharge Foci, Recycling



Salt Systems of the Earth: Distribution, Tectonic and Kinematic History, Salt-Naphthids Interrelations, Discharge Foci, Recycling

Galina Belenitskaya

ISBN: 978-1-119-47929-1 November 2018 714 Pages


Like water, salt is one of the most commonplace items in our everyday lives.  From the omnipresent shaker that you see on every table in every restaurant, to the ocean water we swim in, salt is something that we rarely think about.  But there is much more to the story of salt than most people think.  Not only is salt a natural resource that must be captured and refined for public consumption, but “salt domes,” large deposits of salt that form under the ground, are important for finding and drilling for petroleum and natural gas. Salt is so important that, in ancient times, it was sometimes used as a currency in various cultures around the world, and it has been used as a food preservative, long before refrigeration was invented.  Salt is something we rarely think about, but it is one of the most important natural resources that exists.

This is the first integrated study of salt’s global development in the Earth’s subsurface, its tectonic history and kinematic evolution, “live” salt-naphtide interconnections, and their geological recycling. The Earth’s salt is shown as a peculiar umbilical thread in the analysis of numerous geological processes of salt formation, transformation, migration, discharge and regeneration, and their association with hydrocarbons.  Presented here is the science of salt, including the active salt bodies’ “live” in Earth’s subsurface, their fate and influence over the other geological processes, including grandiose systems of kinetically interrelated allochthonous nappe-like and sub-vertical bodies formed by the migrating salt.  Also included are a description of sub-conformable sheet-like salt bodies formed not by the evaporation but by emigration of buried brine-salt masses and their discharge at new, younger stratigraphic levels, a description of a phenomenon of the “halo-volcanism” due to depth breakthroughs and explosive discharges of the hydrocarbon-brine-salt masses, an examination of the over-diapir surface and brine lakes with fluctuating levels, and many other things. The book provides new interpretations of numerous issues reflecting the salt “life” manifestations and gives a key to a broad circle of the geological enigmas, from global events like the Messinian crisis in the Mediterranean to Biblical legends and enigmas of the Dead Sea-lake.

Whether you are a scientist or student working in the natural or Earth sciences, a geologist, an anthropologist, a petroleum engineer, a petrophysicist, or any other engineer or student working in petroleum engineering, this groundbreaking work is a must-have.  Perfect for any scientist or engineer’s library, this volume can be a must-read page-turner or a valuable reference work.

Abstract vii

Introduction 1

PART 1 Salts in Earth’s Crust: Composition, Tectonic and Kinematic History, Salt-Naphthide Parakinesis 11

1 Geological-Tectonic Review of World Salt-Bearing Basins 13

1.1 Introduction 13

1.2 Salt-Bearing Basins of Eurasia 25

1.2.1 Geotectonic and Mineragenic Review 25

1.2.2 Brief Geological-Mineragenic Description of the Largest Salt-Bearing Basins 31 Salt-Bearing Basins of Europe 31 Asian Salt-Bearing Basins 72

1.3 Salt-Bearing Basin of North America 105

1.3.1 Geotectonic and Mineragenic Review 105

1.3.2 Brief Geological-Mineragenic Description of the Largest Salt-Bearing Basins 107

1.4 Salt-Bearing Basins of South America 128

1.4.1 Geotectonic and Mineragenic Review 128

1.4.2 Brief Geological-Mineragenic Description of the Largest Salt-Bearing Basins 129

1.5 Salt-Bearing Basins of Africa and Arabia 136

1.5.1 Geotectonic and Mineragenic Review 136

1.5.2 Brief Geological-Mineragenic Description of the Largest Salt-Bearing Basins 138

1.6 Salt-Bearing Basins of Australia 154

1.6.1 Geotectonic and Mineragenic Review 154

1.6.2 Brief Geological-Mineragenic Description of the Largest Salt-Bearing Basins 156

1.7 Conclusion 162

2 Historical-Geodynamic Analysis of the Spatial and Temporal Distribution of the World’s Salt-Bearing Basins 163

2.1 Introduction 163

2.2 Fundamentals of the Geodynamic Analysis 164

2.2.1 Terminology 165

2.2.2 Geodynamic Classification 166

2.2.3 Geodynamic Types of Salt-Bearing Basins, their Diagnostic Indications and Lithogeodynamic Models 171

2.3 On the Preservation of Salt Bodies and Information Value of the Geologic Record 175

2.4 Neo-Geodynamic Salt-Bearing Basins of the World 177

2.4.1 Overview and Analysis 177

2.4.2 The General Picture of Placing Neo-Geodynamic Salt-Bearing Basins in the Recent Kinematic Structure of Earth (Analysis Results) 198

2.5 Geodynamic History of the Salt Accumulation 201

2.6 Patterns in the Geodynamic Placement of Salt-Bearing Basins 213

2.6.1 Salt Accumulation Periodicity 213

2.6.2 Orderliness in the Spatial Placement of Salt-Bearing Objects 214

2.6.3 Regional Features of the Salt-Bearing Objects’ Age Distribution 215

2.6.4 Geodynamic “Specialization” of Salt Accumulation Epochs 218

2.6.5 Geochemical “Specialization” of Salt Accumulation Epochs 219

2.6.6 Inheritance in the Placement of Salt-Bearing Objects 220

2.7 Conclusions 222

3 Kinematic History of the Salts in Earth’s Crust 227

3.1 Morpho-Kinematic Groups of Salt Bodies 227

3.2 Salt Bodies of the Salt-Tectonic Group 229

3.3 Salt Bodies of the Orthotectonic Group 236

3.3.1 Salt Behavior Under Conditions of Active Tectonics 236

3.3.2 Morphotectonic Features of Salt Bodies in the Nappe-Folded Areas 239

3.3.3 The Salt Prevalence in Folded Areas of Various Ages 242

3.4 Kinematic Evolution of Salt Bodies in the Processes of Tectonic Development 247

3.5 Problems Associated with the Formation of Nappe-Like Salt Bodies 249

3.6 Conclusions 253

PART 2 Salt in the System of Injection Formations. A Recycling Model of the Salt- and Naphthide-Accumulation 257

4 Earth’s Ascending Injection Systems and Injection Sedimentary Formations 259

4.1 Participation Problem of the Ascending Discharges in the Sedimentation 259

4.2 Ascending Discharges in Sedimentation Areas: Objects, Typification 265

4.2.1 System of Injection Discharges 265

4.2.2 Fluids, their Discharge Foci, Influence Aureoles (The Fluid Group Proper) 267

4.2.3 Flowing Rock Masses and their Discharge Foci (Lithokinetic Group) 275

4.2.4 Parakineses of the Injection Discharges 278

4.3 The Recent Picture of Ascending Discharge Distribution 282

4.3.1 Occurrence of Recent Discharges 282

4.3.2 The Scale of a Recent Input of Injection Material in the Depositional Environments 284

4.3.3 Geodynamic Environments of Recent Discharge Foci Placement and their Endogenous Parameters 291

4.3.4 The Environment-Forming Role of Ascending Discharges 295

4.4 Ecological and Sedimentary Consequences of the Recent Ascending Discharges 304

4.4.1 The Consequences of Fluid Discharges 305

4.4.2 The Consequences of Lithokinetic Discharges 311

4.4.3 General Model of the Injection-Depositional Processes 313

4.4.4 A Coordinated Typification of Injection Discharges and of their Injection-Depositional Derivatives 318

4.5 Sedimentary Consequences of Past Ascending Discharges 319

4.5.1 Sedimentary Derivatives and Indications of the Fluid Paleo-Discharges 320

4.5.2 Sedimentary Derivatives and Features of Lithokinetic Paleo-Discharges 326

4.5.3 Injection-Depositional Parageneses 327

4.5.4 Regional Examples of the Injection-Depositional Formations 328

4.6 Combination of the Injection-Depositional Sediment Types with Background Ones 335

4.7 Conclusions. Expanded Option of a Classification of Sedimentogenesis Types 335

5 Regeneration (Recycling) Salt Accumulation Model 341

5.1 Status of the Salt Origin Problem 341

5.2 The Substance of the Regeneration Model and Examples of its Implementation 346

5.3 Geological Prerequisites of the Model Implementation 348

5.3.1 The Material Prerequisites 349

5.3.2 The Geodynamic and Landscape Prerequisites 351

5.4 The Tectono-Kinematic Succession and the Brine-Salt Discharge Types 353

5.5 Sedimentation-Accumulation Consequences of Brine-Salt Discharges 356

5.5.1 General Succession of Processes in Sedimentation Basins 356

5.5.2 Chemogenic-Accumulative Processes (Interaction between Brines and the Basin Water) 360

5.5.3 Extrusive-Accumulative Processes (Consequences of the Salt Mass Discharge) 364

5.5.4 Discharge Consequences in Continental Environments 367

5.6 Discussion of the Regeneration Model 369

5.6.1 Evaluation of the Model’s Genetic Positions and the Correspondence of the Real Salt-Bearing Bodies Features with the Sedimentation Consequences of the Model 369

5.6.2 Mineragenic Aspects of the Model 373

5.6.3 Evidence of the Regeneration Processes’ Participation in the Formation of Salt Bodies 374

5.6.4 On the Causes of Underestimating the Role of Regeneration Processes in the Salt Accumulation 376

5.6.5 The Salt Dating Problem 378

5.6.6 On Some Contradictions of the Evaporite Salt Accumulation Models 379

5.6.7 On the Role of Exhalation Processes in the Salt Accumulation 380

5.7 On the Evolution of the Salt Accumulation Scale and Mechanism in Earth’s Geologic History 381

5.7.1 The Stratigraphic Placement of Salt 381

5.7.2 On the Interrelations of Various Salt Accumulation Mechanisms and Their Evolution in Earth’s Geologic History 383

5.8 Conclusions 386

PART 3 Natural Salt Accumulation Belts and Nodes (Examples) 389

6 Belts of Salt-Dome Basins along the Margins of Young Oceans 391

6.1 Introduction 391

6.2 Arrangement of Salt-Dome Basins along the Margins of Young Oceans 392

6.3 Geological Features of Marginal Oceanic Salt-Dome Basins 397

6.4 Geodynamic Position and History of Marginal Oceanic Salt-Dome Basins 398

6.5 Morphokinematic Features of Salt Tectonics in Marginal Oceanic Basins 403

6.6 Specific Conditions and Mechanisms of Salt Tectonics in Marginal Oceanic Basins 405

6.7 Geodynamic Settings of Salt Tectonics in Marginal Oceanic Basins 407

6.8 The Salt Tectonics Influence on the Structure of Sedimentary Sequences of Marginal Oceanic Basins 409

6.9 Petroleum Resource Potential of Marginal Oceanic Salt-Dome Basins 410

6.10 Conclusions 411

7 The Mexican Salt-Oil Node and Center of Natural and Geo-Technogenic Oil Catastrophes 413

7.1 Introduction 413

7.2 Geologic, Petroleum and Fluid-Dynamic Particulars of the Mexican Basin 414

7.3 Salt and Petroleum-Bearing Subsurface of the Mexican Basin 418

7.4 Live Floor of the Gulf of Mexico 422

7.5 Accidents on the Oil Wells as Geotechnogenic Phenomenon 428

7.6 Emergency Oil Spills and Naphtha Sedimentogenesis 432

7.7 Largest Salt-Petroleum Basins as Global Centers of Hope and Hazard 434

7.8 On the Elimination of Oil Spills’ Ecologic Consequences 436

7.9 Conclusions 439

8 Mediterranean Salt-Bearing Super-Giant.The Messinian Salinity Crisis Enigma 441

8.1 Introduction 441

8.2 Key Features of the Geology and Paleogeodynamic History 443

8.2.1 Major Geology Features 443

8.2.2 Paleogeodynamic History 447

8.3 Salt Bearing of the Subsurface. Current Distribution of the Messinian and Triassic Salts 449

8.3.1 The Messinian Salt Sequences 450

8.3.2 The Triassic Salts (Modern Distribution) 455

8.3.3 The Current Spatial Interrelations between the Triassic and Miocene Salts 461

8.4 The Kinematic History of the Triassic Salts an their Distribution in the Pre-Messinian Time 465

8.5 The Messinian Crisis of Salinity. Existing Concepts of the Messinian Salts Origin 469

8.6 The Messinian Events as a Realization of the Regeneration Model 473

8.6.1 The Geological Events of the Messinian Time 475

8.6.2 The Processes of the Brine-Salt Masses Discharge 479

8.6.3 The Processes of Salt Accumulation 479

8.6.4 Analysis of Prerequisites and Events that had Facilitated the Realization of the Regeneration Model 480

8.7 A discussion of the Events and “Paradoxes” of the Messinian Salt Accumulation from the Perspective of the Regeneration and Evaporite Models (A Comparative Analysis) 481

8.7.1 The Messinian Time Events 482

8.7.2 “Paradoxes” and Contradictions of the Messinian Salt Accumulation 483

8.7.3 Results of the Comparative Analysis 488

8.7.4 About the Indications of the Regeneration Processes’ Participation in the Messinian Salt Bodies 489

8.7.5 About the Causes of Disregard of the Injection Processes’ Possible Role in the Messinian Salt Accumulation 490

8.8 Conclusions 490

9 The Dead Sea: A Small Naphtho-Salt Node and Discharge Focus 493

9.1 Introduction 493

9.2 Key Features of Geology and Fluid-Dynamics of the Dead Sea Graben 495

9.2.1 Structural-Tectonic Situation 495

9.2.2 The Dead Sea Graben Salt Subsurface 499

9.2.3 Fluid-Dynamic Tensions in the Dead Sea Subsurface and the Ways of its Discharge 502

9.3 The “Salt-Bearing Miracle” of the Globe 503

9.3.1 The Dead Sea and its “Unusual” Features 503

9.3.2 The Dead Sea Features as Reflected in its Names 511

9.4 Origin and History of the Dead Sea Salts, Diapirs and Brines 515

9.4.1 Existing Concepts of the Origin of the Dead Sea Salt Graben 515

9.4.2 An Allochthonous Model of Formation of Salts Filling-Up the Dead Sea Graben 520

9.4.3 The Origin of the Dead Sea Brines: Why is the Sea Salty? 528

9.4.4 The Dead Sea Salts, Diapirs and Brines Formation History 534

9.5 Оn the Natural Analogues of the Dead Sea 538

9.6 Fluctuation in the Dead Sea Brine Level as a Reflection of “Life” in the Salt-Bearing Subsurface 548

9.6.1 On the Fluctuations of the Dead Sea Brine Level 548

9.6.2 Factors Affecting the Fluctuations of Brine Lakes Levels 553

9.6.3 Pulsation of the Dead Sea Brine Level as a Natural Manifestation of the “Life” of Hydrocarbon-Brine-Salt Subsurface Systems 557

9.7 Myths as Reflections of Natural Events in the Dead Sea “Life” 559

9.7.1 Sodom Events: Testimonies by the Bible, Historians, Geographers, Archeologists 560

9.7.2 Sodom Events: Geologic Interpretation 563

9.7.3 Salt or Halo-Volcanism: Geologic Script of the “Sodom Events” 565

9.7.4 Natural and Geotechnogenic Analogues of the “Sodom Events” 571

9.8 Conclusions 577

PART 4 Oil and Gas Occurrence Issues in the Salts-Bearing Basins 583

Introduction 583

10 Salts and Naphthids: Spatial, Kinetic, Geochemical Interrelations as Forecast Factors 587

10.1 On the Role of Salts in Placement of Hydrocarbon Accumulations 587

10.1.1 General Nature of Spatial Interrelation between Salts and Hydrocarbons 587

10.1.2 The Association with Various Geodynamic Types of Salt-Bearing Basins 591

10.1.3 The Role of Salts Various Morpho-Kinetic Types 596

10.2 Salt-Naphthide Nodes 598

10.3 Geological Features of Salt-Naphthide Nodes as the Factors of Petroleum Occurrence Forecast (Salt-Naphthide Nodes as Geological Models) 603

10.4 Salt-Naphthide Nodes as Centers of Salt, Brines and Hydrocarbons Ascending Migration and Discharge 606

10.5 On the Salt and Naphthide Crust Recycling 610

10.6 Conclusion. The Utilization of the Salt-Naphthide Interconnections in the Forecast Evaluation of Petroleum Occurrences in Salt-Bearing Basins 611

11 Placement Patterns and Criteria of the Hydrogen Sulfide-Containing Natural Gas Field Forecast Evaluation 615

11.1 Introduction 615

11.2 Distribution 616

11.3 The Origin 620

11.4 Factors Controlling the Placement Hydrogen Sulfide Containing Gas Accumulations 622

11.4.1 Formation-Lithological Features 622

11.4.2 Stratigraphic Position 625

11.4.3 Structural-Tectonic Conditions 626

11.4.4 Conditions of Petroleum Occurrence and Gas Reserves 627

11.4.5 Trap Types 628

11.4.6 Thermobaric Conditions 628

11.4.7 Hydrogeological Conditions 629

11.4.8 Microbiological Parameters 629

11.4.9 Phase-Type of Accumulations 629

11.4.10 Properties of Accumulations’ Chemical Composition 630

11.4.11 Sulfur Isotope Composition 631

11.4.12 Complexity and Zoning of the Mineral-Geochemical Sulfur Shows 632

11.4.13 The Destruction, Migration and Discharge Parameters 635

11.5 Conclusions. Criteria of the Petroleum Territories Forecast Evaluation for Hydrogen Sulfide Containing Raw Materials 636

11.6 Conclusions 638

References 647

Index 673

About the Author 693