Salt dome traps are formed when deeply buried salt

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Salt-dome traps are formed when deeply buried salt flows like a plastic. Less dense than overlying rock, salt will flow upward and deform overlying strata.
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Stratigraphic traps are created when depositional features create changes in permeability and porosity. Oil and gas collects where the reservoir layer pinches out. II. Oil Exploration and Production Regions bordering the perisan gulf have the largest reservoirs. Ghawar has the largest oil field, most places that create oil are near the equator, or mountain ranges. 25% of America’s reserves are offshore. Humans have used oil from seeps for millennia. The first oil well was drilled in Titusville, Pennsylvania, in 1859. The Drake well initiated an oil boom. Within years, thousands of oil wells had been drilled. Oil soon became the fuel of choice for lighting lamps. Then came a new invention: the automobile. Civilization soon began an addiction to oil. Early exploration involved finding oil seeps. The need for systematic exploration spawned the subdiscipline of petroleum geology. The modern search for oil is complex, dangerous, and exciting. It requires many steps and advanced technology. Geologists map sedimentary rocks, which guides the search for source rocks, reservoirs, and traps. Rock sequences are compiled from outcrops and drill cores. Cross-sections portray the relationships of rock strata and structures, aiding the search. Seismic reflection is able to create an image of the subsurface by bouncing sound off of layers. This permits geologists to look for traps without drilling Seismic imaging is conducted both on land and at sea. These studies are technologically sophisticated and expensive.
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Expensive drilling is required to tap into a potential trap. A diamond rotary bit pulverizes rock, while high-density mud cools the bit and lifts cuttings out of the hole. The heavy mud reduces the risk of high-pressure blowouts. When the hole is completed, the drill rig is removed and a pump is set up. Oil pumped out of the ground is stored in on-site tanks for periodic removal by truck or is added to a pipeline for transport across the countryside.
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  • Fall '08
  • KNAPP
  • Geology, Oil reserves, Oil shale

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