Thermochronologic approaches for fundamental energy exploration (TAFFEE)

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region, Gwich'in Settlement Area

Tags: physical sciences, geology, petroleum industry, rock, sedimentary rocks, exploration

Principal Investigator: Guest, Bernard (1)
Licence Number: 15094
Organization: The University of Calgary
Licenced Year(s): 2012
Issued: Jun 20, 2012
Project Team: Yee Ping Chau (Student, University of Calgary)

Objective(s): To enhance Canada's capacity in the development and application of new methodologies to directly contribute to the development of integrated models of sedimentary basin development and evolution that will inform and guide oil and gas exploration in northern Canada, especially in the three Territories.

Project Description: The goal of this project is to enhance Canada's capacity in the development and application of new methodologies to directly contribute to the development of integrated models of sedimentary basin development and evolution that will inform and guide oil and gas exploration in northern Canada, especially in the three Territories.

This summer, rock samples will be collected from the MacKenzie delta area. Rocks that are of interest are granite and sandstone. The field crew will use a hammer and chisel to collect rock samples of 2-3 kg of each sample. Depending on the exposure of the rocks, the field crew are likely to collect 40 - 60 samples.

A helicopter will be used to help collect rocks and also river guides to take the research team down Firth River in the Yukon to collect some of the rocks.

(1) This work may help to develop new methods to improve the ability to measure the pathway that a rock travels from the time it was formed beneath the earth to where it is found today.

(2) This study will help to provide information that will be useful in finding favorable areas of oil and gas reservoirs in the Beaufort-Mackenzie region. This will have a positive economic impact in northern Canada.

It is our hope that this research will help to develop and improve our ability to measure the time-temperature histories of rocks (that is, when they are heated and when they are cooled). Knowledge of this thermal history is essential to understanding how today's Earth was shaped.

In order to improve the ability to measure the pathway that a rock travels, this study will focus on sedimentary rocks from the Beaufort-Mackenzie River corridor of the Canadian Cordillera. This area has complex geology - it is made up of crustal blocks separated by faults and each block has its own thermal histories. This complexity has been a major stumbling block in the exploration for new oil and gas reserves, as well as understanding the geological framework in this part of the Cordillera.

Knowledge of time-temperature histories of rocks in this area is critical to improving hydrocarbon exploration success, and this in turn will increase exploration effectiveness in northern Canada.

The research team can send report/thesis papers; we can send annual progress report. And, we could also make community presentation, and make appearance in local schools and northern scientific communities

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from July 9, 2012 to August 3, 2012.