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OFR 2019-01

Origin and Li-Enrichment of Selected Oilfield Brines in the Alberta Basin, Canada

Abstract: Oilfield brines investigated in this study occupy both the pre-Cretaceous and post-Jurassic regional groundwater flow regimes within the Alberta Basin. Samples of pre-Cretaceous groundwater primarily represent Devonian carbonate units while post-Jurassic regime samples primarily represent Cretaceous siliciclastic units.  Pre-Cretaceous regime brines located east of the western margin of the Cooking Lake platform (referred to as central-regime brines in this study) show differing properties and have differing evolutionary histories than those lying to the west of the western platform margin (referred to as western-regime brines).  Pre-Cretaceous central-regime brines evolved through progressive evapoconcentration to the point of halite saturation as mid-Devonian seawater moved away from the northwestern open-marine connection of the Devonian Elk Point Basin. Brines nearing the southeastern margin of the Elk Point Basin were enriched in K and Li through dissolution of late-stage evaporite minerals (potash) of the Prairie Evaporite Formation. Following infiltration into the underlying Winnipegosis / Keg River Formation, brines were transported westward by gravitationally-driven flow. Regionally-upward groundwater flow, associated with Laramide tectonism, then forced central-regime brines upward into stratigraphically-higher Devonian carbonates, including the Nisku and Leduc formations.  Pre-Cretaceous western-regime brines evolved through evapoconcentration of mid-Devonian seawater, but not to the point of halite saturation, followed by dissolution of pre-existing halite deposits. K- and Li-enrichment of western-regime brines likely do not represent evaporative processes or interaction with evaporite minerals but, rather, reflect the contribution of hydrothermal fluids.  The composition of post-Jurassic-regime brines can be largely explained as a mixture of underlying pre-Cretaceous regime brines with varying amounts of meteoric water. Place Keywords 72m 73d 73e 73l 73m 74d 82n 82o 82p 83a 83b 83c 83d 83e 83f 83g 83h 83i 83j 83k 83l 83m 83n 83o 83p 84a 84b 84c 84d alberta canada Theme Keywords brines geochemistry geology lithium

Huff, G.F.  2019-03-01

DIG 2019-0002

Water Geochemistry of Selected Formation Brines in the Alberta Basin, Canada (tabular data, tab-delimited format)

Water Geochemistry of Selected Formation Brines in the Alberta Basin, Canada (tabular data, tab-delimited format) In the summer and fall of 2016 we collected water samples directly from the wellhead. Each of the filtered brines was analyzed for ... Show Abstract

Huff, G.F.  Lopez, G.P.  Weiss, J.A.  2019-03-01