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Prospect of shale gas exploration in the Upper Permian Longtan Formation in the Yangtze Massif

Zhou Dongsheng1,Xu Linfeng1,Pan Jiping2,Huang Xiaowei1(1.School of Marine Science and Technology,China University of Geosciences.Beijing 100083,China;2.Strategic Research Center for Oil and Gas Resources,Ministry of Land and Resources.Beijing 100034,China)  
The Yangtze massif is one of the areas in South China where oil and gas exploration started very early.Eight sets of black mud shales,including the Lower Cambrian,Upper Ordovician-Lower Silurian,Upper and Lower Permian,etc.were deposited on the Yangtze massif during the Paleozoic era.In recent years,a lot of basic studies have been carried out on the marine mud shales in the Lower Cambrian Qiongzhusi Fm and the Upper Ordovician-Lower Silurian Wufeng-Longmaxi Fms.In contrast,few studies have been conducted on the transitional shale in the Upper Permian Longtan Fm.In view of this,based on the previous research results and field geologic survey data,this paper analyzes the development characteristics of the Upper Permian Longtan Fm shale,and also discusses its prospect.The black shales in the Longtan Fm are featured by relatively high TOC,high thermal maturity,about 40% of the quartz content,thickness of 20-200 m,and strong adsorption capability,all being favorable conditions for shale gas accumulation and indicating a high shale gas potential there quite similar to the Lewis shale in the San Juan Basin(USA).However,its high clay content,strong heterogeneity,and strong later-stage tectonic modification have an adverse effect on shale gas enrichment.Vertically,the upper and middle members are more favorable for shale gas exploration than the lower member in the Longtan Fm,while horizontally the central and eastern Sichuan Basin and northwestern Chongqing in the Upper Yangtze as well as the southern Jiangsu in the Lower Yangtze are favorable for shale gas exploration.
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