EXPLORATION Benzene content of subsurface brines can indicate proximity of oil, gas

Stephen G. Burtell, Victor T. Jones III Exploration Technologies Inc. Houston Over the years geochemists have explored the application of brine benzene analysis as a proximity indicator of petroleum deposits.1 Such studies have been shown to be highly effective in confirming the approximate distance from a dry hole to a reservoir in the same hydrogeologic system by mapping the plume of dissolved petroleum constituents emanating from the nearby accumulation.2 Major sources of error in these initial studies were due to the difficulty in storing, handling, and analyzing brine samples without loss or fractionation of volatile constituents. With the advent of standardized environ...

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