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Lithologic descriptions, geophysical logs, and source-rock geochemistry of the U.S. Geological Survey Alcova Reservoir AR–1–13 Core Hole, Natrona County, Wyoming

November 24, 2021

In 2013, a continuous 624-foot core hole was drilled and logged by the U.S. Geological Survey in Natrona County, Wyoming, with the goal to better understand Cretaceous source rocks in the Wind River Basin. The core hole, named the Alcova Reservoir AR–1–13, penetrated the interval extending from the upper part of the Lower Cretaceous Cloverly Formation to the lower part of the Upper Cretaceous Frontier Formation. The lithologies are predominantly mudrock, with minor amounts of sandstone and altered volcanic ash beds that were deposited in open marine, nearshore marine, and fluvial settings.

Samples were collected from open marine clay-rich, dark-colored mudrocks, and these were analyzed for total organic carbon content and by programmed pyrolysis analysis. The results show that the lower part of the Frontier Formation, Shell Creek Shale equivalent, and the Thermopolis Shale contain Type III gas-prone kerogen, with poor to fair generative source rock potential. The upper part of the Mowry Shale has good to excellent generative potential, with organic matter composed mainly of Type II oil-prone kerogen with some mixed Type II/III kerogen capable of generating oil and gas.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2019
Title Lithologic descriptions, geophysical logs, and source-rock geochemistry of the U.S. Geological Survey Alcova Reservoir AR–1–13 Core Hole, Natrona County, Wyoming
DOI 10.3133/sir20195123
Authors Mark A. Kirschbaum, Thomas M. Finn, Christopher J. Schenk, Sarah J. Hawkins
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Report
Series Number 2019-5123
Index ID sir20195123
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Central Energy Resources Science Center

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