Jianliang Liua,b*, Keyu Liua,c, Zhenxue Jiangd, Lili Guiee and Fulai Liaa

a School of Geosciences, China University of Petroleum, Qingdao, Shandong 266580, China.

b Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Depositional Mineralization & Sedimentary Minerals, Shandong University of Science and Technology.

c Laboratory for Marine Mineral Resources, Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, Qingdao, Shandong, 266200, China.

d Institute of Unconventional Natural Gas Research, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, China.

e Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration and Development, PetroChina, Beijing 100083, China.

* corresponding author, email: 51liujianliang@163.com

Abundant gas and condensate resources are present in the Kuqa foreland basin in the northern Tarim Basin, NW China. Most of the hydrocarbons so far discovered are located in foldbelts in the north and centre of the foreland basin, and the Southern Slope region has therefore been less studied. This paper focusses on the Yangtake area in the west of the Southern Slope. Basin modelling was integrated with fluid inclusion analyses to investigate the oil and gas charge history of the area.

1D modelling at two widely spaced wells (DB-1 and YN-2) assessed the burial, thermal and hydrocarbon generation histories of Jurassic source rocks in the foreland basin. Results show that the source rocks began to generate hydrocarbons (Ro >0.5%) during the Miocene. In both wells, the source rocks became mature to highly mature between 12 and 1.8 Ma, and most oil and gas was generated at 5.3–1.8 Ma with peak generation at about 3 Ma.

Two types of petroleum fluid inclusions were observed in Cretaceous and lower Paleocene sandstone reservoir rocks at wells YTK-5 and YTK-1 in the Yangtake area. The inclusions in general occur along healed microfractures in quartz grains, and have either yellowish or blueish fluorescence colours. Aqueous inclusions coexisting with both types of oil inclusions in Cretaceous sandstones in well YTK-5 had homogenization temperatures of 96-128 °C and 115-135 °C, respectively.

The integrated results of this study suggest that oil generated by the Middle Jurassic Qiakemake Formation source rocks initially charged sandstone reservoirs in the Yangtake area at about 4 Ma, forming the yellowish-fluorescing oil inclusions. Gas, which was mainly sourced from Lower Jurassic Yangxia and Middle Jurassic Kezilenuer coaly and mudstone source rocks, initially migrated into the same reservoirs in the Yangtake area at about 3.5 Ma and interacted with the early-formed oils forming blueish-fluorescing oil inclusions. The migration of gas also resulted in formation of the condensate accumulations which are present at the YTK-1 and YTK-2 fields in the Yangtake area.

Key words: basin modelling, fluid inclusions, lacustrine source rocks, charge history, Yangtake foldbelt, Kuqa foreland basin, Tarim Basin, NW China.

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