Sedimentary facies distribution and the characteristics of transitional shale in the upper Palaeozoic in northeast Ordos basin, China

  • Chunqi XueEmail author
  • Jianhua Zhong
  • Mengxiang Hou
  • Fengtian Li
  • Chaofeng Peng
Original Paper


The Taiyuan formation that was formed in the late Permian period of the upper Palaeozoic in the Linxing area, north-eastern of Ordos basin, China, shows the marine and continental interdepositional systems, as well as the resource potential of shale gas. Through a field outcrop, core observation, and well logging data, the Taiyuan formation can be divided into Tai1 (p1t1) and Tai2 formations (p1t2). The main depositional environments of the region in Taiyuan formation included tidal flats, swamp, and lagoon which is also a good depositional environment for high-quality shale development. During the Taiyuan formation period, the sedimentary sea level in the study area rose and fell frequently, and the barrier coastal sedimentary system is mainly developed. In addition, the shale has superior development characteristics: The Taiyuan formation shale has a considerable amount of material, with an accumulated thickness of greater than 30 m; the average organic carbon content in the Taiyuan group is 3.34%, and the content in the Tai2 formation (p1t2) is slightly higher than in the Tai1 formation (p1t1); a high thermal evolution content is developed with an average vitrinite reflectance (Ro) of 1.33%; the Kerogen type is the III model, in which gases are mainly developed; the brittle mineral content in the rock mineral components is high, and the brittleness index is generally greater than 50%, which indicates a high rate of compressibility. Therefore, the Taiyuan formation indicates a marine and continental interdeposition and has a high exploration and development potential for shale gas.


Marine and continental interdeposition Sedimentary environment Taiyuan formation Shale gas 


Funding information

This study was financially supported by the National Science and Technology Major Project from the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Republic of China (Grant No. 2016ZX05066001-003).


  1. Ziqi Feng (2014) Characteristics and evaluation of Marine and continental transitional facies shale in Shanxi formation in southeastern of Ordos basin. Dissertation, China University of Geosciences (Beijing)Google Scholar
  2. Guo X (2014) Enrichment mechanism and exploration technology in the Jiaoshiba area of fulling shale gas field. BeijingGoogle Scholar
  3. Guo S, Wang Y (2013) The conditions of gas accumulation and exploration potential in Benxi formation of carboniferous system in the Ordos basin. Acta Petrol Sin 34(3):445–452Google Scholar
  4. Guo S, Zhao K (2016) The characteristics and gas content of upper Paleozoic shale in the eastern edge of Ordos basin. Journal of Southwest Petroleum University 38(1):1–9Google Scholar
  5. Hou Z, Chen S, Wang Y, Li T, He Q, Cui Q (2018) Sequence stratigraphy and sedimentary facies of the upper Paleozoic boundary in Baode area on the eastern edge of the Ordos basin. Jo Paleogeogr 20(2):231–243Google Scholar
  6. Jiang H, Song X, An X, Qi R, Kong Q, Peng S (2008) Current situation and prospect of world shale gas resources exploration and development. Pet Geol Dev Daqing 27(6):10–14Google Scholar
  7. Lan C, Guo W, Wang Q, Zhang X (2016) The conditions and favorable areas for shale gas accumulation in the Shanxi formation of Permian in eastern ordos basin. Acta Geol Sin 90(1):177–188Google Scholar
  8. Loydell DK, Butcher A, Fryda J (2013) The Middle Rhuddanian (Low Silurian) “hot” shale of North Africa and Arabia: an atypical hydrocarbon source rock. Palaeogeogr Palaeoclimatol Palaeoecol 386(2):233–256CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Mustafa KA, Sephton MA, Watson JS (2015) Organic geo-chemical characteristics of black shales across the Ordoviciane Silurian boundary in the Holy Cross the Mountains, central Poland. Mar Pet Geol 66(3):1042–1055CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Shen Y, Guo Y, Li Z, Wei X, Jia Z (2009) Sequence stratigraphic characteristics of Benxi formation - Taiyuan formation, eastern margin of the Ordos basin. Acta Geosci Sin 30(2):187–193Google Scholar
  11. Sun J (2017) Study on sedimentary facies and shale gas exploration potential of Taiyuan formation - Shanxi formation in southern of Ordos basin. Dissertation, China University of Geosciences (Beijing)Google Scholar
  12. Tang X, Zhang J, Ding W, Yu B, Wang L, Ma Y, Yang Y, Chen H, Huang H, Zhao P (2016) Reservoir and gas bearing properties of Marine and land transitional facies shale in the southeast of ordos basin. Earth Sci Front 23(2):147–157Google Scholar
  13. Wang Q, Qiao M, Zheng Y (2017) U.S. shale gas chemical industry reshapes global chemical industry chain. China Petroleum Enterp (1):73–74Google Scholar
  14. Wu P, Gao J, Guo J, Zhou Y, Hu X (2018) Sequence stratigraphy and sedimentary characteristics of Qiaotou sandstone of Taiyuan formation in Linxing area on the eastern margin of the Ordos basin. Oil Gas Geol 39(1):66–76Google Scholar
  15. Yang H, Fu J, Liu X, Meng P (2012) The conditions and exploration and development of tight gas accumulation in upper Paleozoic in ordos basin. Pet Explor Dev 39(3):295–303CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Zhang J, Jin Z, Yuan M (2004) Formation mechanism and distribution of shale gas. Nat Gas Ind 24(7):15–18Google Scholar
  17. Zhao K, Guo S, Liu X, Zhao H, Hou Y, Wang H (2014) Quantitative characterization of the upper Paleozoic shale reservoir on the eastern edge of the Ordos basin. Sci Technol Rev 32(32):60–66Google Scholar
  18. Zhou S, Chen S, Si Q, Han Y, Zhang C (2016) The gas accumulation characteristics of the Taiyuan formation in the eastern edge of Ordos basin. Petrol Explor Dev 23(1):38–43Google Scholar
  19. Zou C, Dong D, Wang Y, Li X, Huang J, Wang S (2015) Characteristics, challenges and prospects of China’s shale gas (I). Pet Explor Dev 42(6):689–701CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Zou C, Dong D, Wang Y, Li X, Huang J (2016) Characteristics, challenges and prospects of China’s shale gas (II). Pet Explor Dev 43(2):166–178CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Saudi Society for Geosciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chunqi Xue
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jianhua Zhong
    • 1
  • Mengxiang Hou
    • 1
  • Fengtian Li
    • 1
  • Chaofeng Peng
    • 1
  1. 1.China University of Petroleum (East China)QingdaoChina

Personalised recommendations