Characterizing borehole fluid flow and formation permeability in the ocean crust using linked analytic models and Markov chain Monte Carlo analysis

D. M. Winslow, A. T. Fisher, Keir Becker

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9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Thermal records from boreholes in young oceanic crust, in which water is flowing up or down, are used to assess formation and borehole flow properties using three analytic equations that describe the transient thermal and barometric influence of downhole or uphole flow. We link these calculations with an iterative model and apply Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) analysis to quantify ranges of possible values. The model is applied to two data sets interpreted in previous studies, from Deep Sea Drilling Project Hole 504B on the southern flank of the Costa Rica Rift and Ocean Drilling Program Hole 1026B on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge, and to two new records collected in Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Holes U1301A and U1301B, also on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Our calculations indicate that fluid flow rates when thermal logs were collected were ∼2 L/s in Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and >20 L/s in Hole U1301B. The median bulk permeabilities determined with MCMC analyses are 4 to 7 × 10-12 m2 around the uppermost parts of Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and 1.5 × 10 -11 m2 around a deeper section of Hole U1301B, with a standard deviation of 0.2 to 0.3 log cycles at each borehole. The consistency of permeability values inferred from these four holes is surprising, given the range of values determined globally and the tendency for permeability to be highly variable in fractured crystalline rock formations such as the upper oceanic crust.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3857-3874
Number of pages18
JournalGeochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
Volume14
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013

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Monte Carlo analysis
Markov chains
Markov chain
boreholes
Boreholes
Markov processes
fluid flow
Flow of fluids
crusts
Drilling
permeability
oceans
borehole
crust
Ocean Drilling Program
oceanic crust
ocean
Crystalline rocks
drilling
crystalline rock

Keywords

  • fluid flow
  • heat flow
  • hydrothermal circulation
  • Markov chain Monte Carlo
  • ocean crust
  • permeability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics

Cite this

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abstract = "Thermal records from boreholes in young oceanic crust, in which water is flowing up or down, are used to assess formation and borehole flow properties using three analytic equations that describe the transient thermal and barometric influence of downhole or uphole flow. We link these calculations with an iterative model and apply Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) analysis to quantify ranges of possible values. The model is applied to two data sets interpreted in previous studies, from Deep Sea Drilling Project Hole 504B on the southern flank of the Costa Rica Rift and Ocean Drilling Program Hole 1026B on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge, and to two new records collected in Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Holes U1301A and U1301B, also on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Our calculations indicate that fluid flow rates when thermal logs were collected were ∼2 L/s in Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and >20 L/s in Hole U1301B. The median bulk permeabilities determined with MCMC analyses are 4 to 7 × 10-12 m2 around the uppermost parts of Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and 1.5 × 10 -11 m2 around a deeper section of Hole U1301B, with a standard deviation of 0.2 to 0.3 log cycles at each borehole. The consistency of permeability values inferred from these four holes is surprising, given the range of values determined globally and the tendency for permeability to be highly variable in fractured crystalline rock formations such as the upper oceanic crust.",
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author = "Winslow, {D. M.} and Fisher, {A. T.} and Keir Becker",
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T1 - Characterizing borehole fluid flow and formation permeability in the ocean crust using linked analytic models and Markov chain Monte Carlo analysis

AU - Winslow, D. M.

AU - Fisher, A. T.

AU - Becker, Keir

PY - 2013

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N2 - Thermal records from boreholes in young oceanic crust, in which water is flowing up or down, are used to assess formation and borehole flow properties using three analytic equations that describe the transient thermal and barometric influence of downhole or uphole flow. We link these calculations with an iterative model and apply Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) analysis to quantify ranges of possible values. The model is applied to two data sets interpreted in previous studies, from Deep Sea Drilling Project Hole 504B on the southern flank of the Costa Rica Rift and Ocean Drilling Program Hole 1026B on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge, and to two new records collected in Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Holes U1301A and U1301B, also on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Our calculations indicate that fluid flow rates when thermal logs were collected were ∼2 L/s in Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and >20 L/s in Hole U1301B. The median bulk permeabilities determined with MCMC analyses are 4 to 7 × 10-12 m2 around the uppermost parts of Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and 1.5 × 10 -11 m2 around a deeper section of Hole U1301B, with a standard deviation of 0.2 to 0.3 log cycles at each borehole. The consistency of permeability values inferred from these four holes is surprising, given the range of values determined globally and the tendency for permeability to be highly variable in fractured crystalline rock formations such as the upper oceanic crust.

AB - Thermal records from boreholes in young oceanic crust, in which water is flowing up or down, are used to assess formation and borehole flow properties using three analytic equations that describe the transient thermal and barometric influence of downhole or uphole flow. We link these calculations with an iterative model and apply Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) analysis to quantify ranges of possible values. The model is applied to two data sets interpreted in previous studies, from Deep Sea Drilling Project Hole 504B on the southern flank of the Costa Rica Rift and Ocean Drilling Program Hole 1026B on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge, and to two new records collected in Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Holes U1301A and U1301B, also on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Our calculations indicate that fluid flow rates when thermal logs were collected were ∼2 L/s in Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and >20 L/s in Hole U1301B. The median bulk permeabilities determined with MCMC analyses are 4 to 7 × 10-12 m2 around the uppermost parts of Holes 504B, 1026B, and U1301A, and 1.5 × 10 -11 m2 around a deeper section of Hole U1301B, with a standard deviation of 0.2 to 0.3 log cycles at each borehole. The consistency of permeability values inferred from these four holes is surprising, given the range of values determined globally and the tendency for permeability to be highly variable in fractured crystalline rock formations such as the upper oceanic crust.

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