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Abstract

Foreland basins as the Alberta Basin in Canada host a variety of geoenergy resources. Often, the focus is on hydrocarbon resources but in times of discussions about climate change and environmental aspects, additional green energy resources are requested. This study explores Paleozoic formations in the north western Alberta Basin with regard to their usability as geothermal reservoirs. A 3D geological model is developed based on 177 km of 2D seismic data and stratigraphic picks of about 1000 wells from the Alberta general well data file. Seven siliciclastic and carbonate units form the major Paleozoic aquifer systems. Porosity and permeability of these Paleozoic formations is derived from data from about 10,000 core analyses and mapped with geostatistical methods. Formation temperature of Paleozoic strata is estimated by a newly calculated geothermal gradient and the reservoir depth range derived from the 3D model. The siliciclastic Granite Wash unit is presumable the most potential horizon suitable for geothermal development. Its temperature is above 70 °C, effective porosity is estimated with 10 % to 15 %. A possible application for the production of geothermal heat is the provision of warm water for in-situ oil sands extraction in this region reducing climate gas emissions.

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/content/papers/10.3997/2214-4609.20131136
2013-06-10
2021-12-05
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