- Copyright © 2001 Society of Exploration Geophysicists
Editor's note: This material in this article was presented at the 4th Middle East Geosciences Conference and Exhibition, GEO 2000, Bahrain, in March 2000 and was previously published in GeoArabia (Volume 6, Number 2). It is reprinted with permission.
A new regional tectonic model has been developed by Phillips (Webster, 2000), which allows for the development in central and southern Oman of Infracambrian salt basins that evolved with similar structural and depositional histories. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, southwest Oman was believed to have been affected by Early Cambrian regional deformation due to the collision of two Precambrian continental blocks. The deformation resulted in what has been described as the Western Deformation Front (Loosveld et al., 1996) that loosely delineated the western margin of prospectivity in Oman. Recent work by Phillips suggests that the deformation was of an intracratonic nature and much more localized than previously thought. As a result, the prospectivity of southwest Oman has been upgraded.
The paper focuses primarily on two southwest Oman concessions, Block 36 Al Hashman and Block 38 Mudayy (Figure 1), that Phillips operated until June 2001 in association with Maersk Oil and Gas and Berkley Petroleum (since acquired by Anadarko Petroleum Corp.). It attempts to demonstrate through reevaluation of reprocessed seismic and gravity data the presence of a fourth, as yet undrilled, Infracambrian salt basin in this part of Oman. Several exploration plays are proposed for the new salt basin that are analogous to plays proven in the known salt basins of Oman.
Blocks 36 and 38 have a combined area of approximately 36 000 km2. Immediately west is the Republic of Yemen, north the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Rub' Al …