A molecular and isotopic study of the organic matter from the Paris Basin, France

Abstract : Thirteen Liassic sedimentary rocks of increasing depth and three petroleums from the Paris Basin were studied for 13C/12C isotopic compositions and biological markers, including steranes, sterenes, methylphenanthrenes, methylanthracene and triaromatic steroids. The isotopic compositions of n-alkanes from mature sedimentary rocks and petroleums fall in a narrow range (2‰) except for the deepest Hettangian rock and the Trias petroleum for which the short-chain n-alkanes are enriched and depleted in 13C, respectively . Most of the molecular parameters increase over the 2000-2500 m depth range, reflecting the transformation of the organic matter at the onset of petroleum generation. In this zone, carbonate content and carbon isotopic composition of carbonates as well as molecular parameters are distinct for the Toarcian and Hettangian source rocks and suggest a migration of organic matter from these two formations. Two novel molecular parameters were defined for this task, one using methyltriaromatic steroids from organic extracts and the other using 1-methylphenanthrene and 2-methylanthracene from kerogen pyrolysates. The anomalous high maturity of the Dogger petroleum relative to the maturity-depth trend of the source rocks is used to estimate the minimal vertical distance of migration of the organic matter from the source rock to the reservoir.
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Eric Lichtfouse, Pierre Albrecht, Françoise Béhar, John Hayes. A molecular and isotopic study of the organic matter from the Paris Basin, France. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Elsevier, 1994, 58 (1), pp.209-221. ⟨10.1016/0016-7037(94)90458-8⟩. ⟨hal-00191892⟩

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