The work tackles the control exerted by a sub-seismic fracture network on both secondary porosity and correspondent permeability of outcropping tight carbonates. Taking advantage of excellent 3D exposures, located in the Murge Plateau of southern Italy, the fracture network is investigated at different scales of observation. The rock multi-layer is made up of 10's of cm-thick, sub-horizontal, laterally continuous limestone beds crosscut by stratabound fractures, non-stratabound fractures, and small faults named as persistent fracture zones with low amounts of offset. Stratabound fractures consist of bed perpendicular joints and sheared joints, non-stratabound fractures of incipient, cm-offset, sub-vertical faults, whereas the 10's of cm-offset persistent fracture zones are made up of 10's of m-high, m-thick fractured damage zones. The aforementioned structural elements localize within discrete carbonate units bounded by primary features such as bed surfaces, prominent surfaces and sedimentary breccia horizons. Such interfaces therefore affected the fracture stratigraphy of the limestone rock, and thus impact the fluid flow properties of the carbonate multilayer by compartmentalizing deformation. In the field, the fracture network is investigated by means of scanline and scan area methodologies to document the orientation, intensity, height distribution, mechanical aperture and roughness of individual fractures exposed along vertical outcrops and pavements of abandoned quarries. Then, Discrete Fracture Network (DFN) models of representative geocellular volumes are built, according to the different scales of analysis, to compute both fracture porosity and correspondent permeability (K-xx, K-yy, K-zz). Results of such a work show that the most prominent non-stratabound fracture set forms the major control on fluid storage and migration at the scales of single beds and bed-packages. At a larger scale, we document that fluid migration mainly occurs along the persistent fracture zones, which enhance the fault-parallel flow. As a whole, the persistent fracture zones form localized fluid conduits embedded within carbonate matrices that show isotropic fluid flow properties. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Fracture stratigraphy and fluid flow properties of shallow-water, tight carbonates: The case study of the Murge Plateau (southern Italy)

PANZA, ELISA
;
AGOSTA, FABRIZIO;PROSSER, Giacomo;
2016

Abstract

The work tackles the control exerted by a sub-seismic fracture network on both secondary porosity and correspondent permeability of outcropping tight carbonates. Taking advantage of excellent 3D exposures, located in the Murge Plateau of southern Italy, the fracture network is investigated at different scales of observation. The rock multi-layer is made up of 10's of cm-thick, sub-horizontal, laterally continuous limestone beds crosscut by stratabound fractures, non-stratabound fractures, and small faults named as persistent fracture zones with low amounts of offset. Stratabound fractures consist of bed perpendicular joints and sheared joints, non-stratabound fractures of incipient, cm-offset, sub-vertical faults, whereas the 10's of cm-offset persistent fracture zones are made up of 10's of m-high, m-thick fractured damage zones. The aforementioned structural elements localize within discrete carbonate units bounded by primary features such as bed surfaces, prominent surfaces and sedimentary breccia horizons. Such interfaces therefore affected the fracture stratigraphy of the limestone rock, and thus impact the fluid flow properties of the carbonate multilayer by compartmentalizing deformation. In the field, the fracture network is investigated by means of scanline and scan area methodologies to document the orientation, intensity, height distribution, mechanical aperture and roughness of individual fractures exposed along vertical outcrops and pavements of abandoned quarries. Then, Discrete Fracture Network (DFN) models of representative geocellular volumes are built, according to the different scales of analysis, to compute both fracture porosity and correspondent permeability (K-xx, K-yy, K-zz). Results of such a work show that the most prominent non-stratabound fracture set forms the major control on fluid storage and migration at the scales of single beds and bed-packages. At a larger scale, we document that fluid migration mainly occurs along the persistent fracture zones, which enhance the fault-parallel flow. As a whole, the persistent fracture zones form localized fluid conduits embedded within carbonate matrices that show isotropic fluid flow properties. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11563/124588
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