Salt Caverns Studies - Regional map of Salt Thickness in the Midland Basin

Access full-text files

Date

1997

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Abstract

Regional variation in the thickness of the major bedded salt-bearing interval of West Texas, the Salado Formation, serves as a screening criterion for distinguishing areas where the salt is heterogeneous, complex, and potentially less stable from areas where salt is more homogeneous. Areas with reduced and variable salt thickness and relatively shallow depths to the top of the salt are identified on the eastern shelf of the Midland Basin in Garza, Borden, Howard, Glasscock, and Reagan counties; along the Pecos River in Crockett, Upton, Crane, and Pecos Counties; and along the western edge of the Central Basin Platform in Ward and Winkler Counties. Initial data suggest that salt may be locally or regionally actively dissolving from these areas.

Salt thinning is observed in areas where the top of salt is relatively deep (>1500 ft) south of the Matador Arch in Cochran, Hockley, and Lubbock counties, and locally along the eastern edge of the Central Basin Platform in Gaines, Andrews, and Ector Counties. This thinning is tentatively interpreted as predominantly resulting from deposition of thin salt or Permian salt dissolution. In all areas of thinning, sedimentary patterns suggest that facies changes may also influence the quality of the salt (salt purity, water content, bed thickness) over short distances. In other areas within the Midland and Delaware Basins, salt thickness changes occur gradually. However, the potential for local areas of salt dissolution, such as those beneath saline lakes, to impact the suitability of salt in these areas as host strata for cavern development, was not investigated in this regional study.

Description

LCSH Subject Headings

Citation

Collections