Stratigraphic partitioning and reservoir distribution of the Late Devonian to Early Mississippian Exshaw Formation, Western Canada Sedimentary Basin.


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The Late Devonian to Early Mississippian Exshaw Formation is a black shale reservoir within the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin (WCSB) that accumulated as an organic-rich basinal mudrock within a tectonically extensional region prone to horst and graben structures. This study characterizes sedimentologic and stratigraphic controls on Exshaw reservoir potential across southern Alberta based upon detailed core descriptions from 18 wells. Four basinal Exshaw depositional facies were identified, and four sequence stratigraphic surfaces were correlated across the study area. Geologic attributes were mapped to identify hydrocarbon potential “zones”. Future exploration initiatives should target the Lower Unit where TOC is highest, and where PE values approach 5 barns/electron and suggest the presence of brittle calcite and susceptibility to hydraulic fracture stimulation.



Exshaw shale. Exshaw Formation. Exshaw black shale. Alberta. Canada. Late Devonian. Early Mississippian. Famennian. Tournaisian. Reservoir distribution. Sequence stratigraphy. Stratigraphic partitioning. Hydrocarbon. Total organic carbon. Thermal maturity. Level of organic metamorphism.