Geology and geohydrology of the Palo Duro Basin, Texas panhandle: a report on the progress of nuclear waste isolation feasibility studies (1982): annual report for the period October 1, 1981-September 30, 1982
Since early 1977, the Bureau of Economic Geology has been evaluating several salt-bearing basins within the State of Texas as part of the national nuclear waste repository program, The Bureau, a research unit of The University of Texas at Austin, is conducting a long-term program to gather and interpret all geologic and hydrologic information necessary to describe, delineate, and evaluate salt-bearing and related strata in the Pals Duro Basin and vicinity. The program in fiscal year 1982 (FY82) was divided into four broad research tasks, which were addressed by a surficial analysis and shallow stratigraphy group, a hydrology and geochemistry group, a basin analysis group, and a seismicity and tectonic environment group. The surficial analysis and shallow stratigraphy group collected surface, subsurface, and remotely sensed data to describe salt dissolution, surface processes, and rates and styles of geomorphic development. The hydrology and geochemistry group continued analysis of shallow and deep fluid circulation within the basin and of rock and fluid geochemistry within the salt-bearing and other stratigraphic units. The basin analysis group characterized the salt- and nonsalt-bearing stratigraphic units within the basin, continued to assess the potential for generating and trapping hydrocarbons within the basin, and continued salt quality studies. The basin analysis group also conducted host-rock analyses and continued to study cores from several drilling sites, analyzing salt and other lithologic units within the cores. The seismicity and tectonic environment group continued to study deep-basin structure and tectonic development, structural controls on sedimentation, and surface and subsurface fracture systems. This paper, a summary of progress during FY82, presents principal conclusions and reviews methods used and data and maps generated, Reports discussing various geologic aspects of the Palo Duro Basin and vicinity are published as phases of study are completed. This research was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy.