Regional Geology and Exploration Potential of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan Utilizing Public Domain Information Including Gravity and Magnetic Data
Abstract:Our purpose is to present the findings and map products generated from public domain sources, found within the area surrounding Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. This presentation includes an introduction, followed by discussions of the geologic setting, plate tectonics, the geothermal regime, satellite imagery and ancillary data, and concludes with a discussion of gravity and magnetic data. Our analysis clearly confirms that regional scale geological mapping and gravity and magnetic data, along with plate tectonic implications, satellite imagery analysis, and ancillary data, give good indications of the presence of basin areas. These basins appear to contain sedimentary rocks of Paleozoic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous age, which are considered to be prospective for hydrocarbon accumulation, since they produce in the adjacent prolific Caspian and West Siberian Basins. These basins are underlain with a thick section of Paleozoic strata resting on a variegated granitic basement, associated with several tectonic plates. The Paleozoic strata contain a series of extensional/trans-tensional older basins. Uplift and movement along strike-slip faults associated with major lineaments produced a regional angular unconformity, which was followed by further deposition. This can easily be identified on nonproprietary seismic data that can be accessed via the internet. Abrupt surface elevation variations relate to the sub-thrusting and movement of the underlying tectonic plates.
Regional gravity has been used to characterize the basin shape and major structural elements involving the geologic features. The work of Sandwell, D. T., W. H. F. Smith, 1997, is available in user friendly format. This data was reviewed and compared to WGM2012 to insure that the best data was utilized. The difference between the Isostatic and Bouguer values was computed and displayed. This regional map portrays all major tectonic features as smooth features, and basins as negative “noses” from the larger negative elements.
The magnetic data is enhanced with the utilization of published high resolution aeromagnetic data. Observations from the magnetic data are consistent with the analysis of all the previously discussed data. There are amplitude and character changes between the magnetic data overlying the various tectonic plates.