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TitleApplication of low-temperature thermochronology to hydrocarbon exploration
AuthorSchneider, D A; Issler, D RORCID logo
SourceFission-track thermochronology and its application to geology; by Malusà, M G (ed.); Fitzgerald, P G (ed.); 2018 p. 315-333, 18
Alt SeriesNatural Resources Canada, Contribution Series 20170139
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
Subjectsgeochronology; fossil fuels; petroleum resources; hydrocarbon potential; petroleum exploration; exploration methods; hydrocarbon generation; thermal analyses; thermal history; thermal maturation; temperature; source rocks; sedimentary basins; fission-track dates; apatite; radiometric dating; paleotemperatures; sampling techniques; modelling; Methodology
Illustrationsgraphs; plots
ProgramGEM2: Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals Mackenzie Corridor, Shield to Selwyn
Released2018 07 15
AbstractThe maturation of organic material into petroleum in a sedimentary basin is controlled by the maximum temperatures attained by the source rock and the thermal history of the basin. A cycle of continuous deposition into the basin (burial) and regional basin inversions represented by unconformities (unroofing) may complicate the simple thermal development of the basin. Applications of low-temperature thermochronology via fission-track (FT) and (U-Th)/He dating coupled with independent measurements (vitrinite reflectance, Rock-Eval) resolving the paleothermal maximum are the ideal approach to illuminate the relationship between time and temperature. In this contribution, we review the basics of low-temperature thermochronology in the context of a project workflow, from sampling to modeling, for resolving the thermal evolution of a hydrocarbon-bearing sedimentary basin. We specifically highlight the application of multi-kinetic apatite FT dating, emphasizing the usefulness of the r(mr0) parameter for interpreting complex apatite age populations that are often present in sedimentary rocks. Still a rapidly advancing science, thermochronology can yield a rich and effective dataset when the minerals are carefully and properly characterized, particularly with regard to mineral chemistry and radiation damage.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
Temperature is a key parameter that influences the formation of petroleum and mineral deposits. This book chapter reviews current knowledge on apatite fission track and (U-Th)/He low temperature thermochronology methods for resolving the thermal evolution of petroleum-bearing sedimentary basins, especially those with complicated geological histories where erosion has removed substantial portions of the stratigraphic record. Specific examples from the Beaufort-Mackenzie Basin and Mackenzie Corridor of northern Canada illustrate how variable apatite mineral composition within a sample can be used to define separate thermochronometers with different temperature sensitivities, thus providing more information on thermal history than the conventional methods currently being used.

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