Characterization of Stylolite Networks in Platform Carbonates

Elliot Humphrey*, Enrique Gomez-Rivas, Juan Diego Martín-Martín, Joyce Neilson, Yao Shuqing, Paul D. Bons

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPublished conference contribution


Stylolites are rough dissolution surfaces that form by intergranular pressure solution resulting from burial compaction or tectonic stress. Despite being ubiquitous in carbonate rocks and potentially influencing fluid flow, it is not yet clear how the type and distribution of stylolite networks relate to lithofacies. This study investigates Lower Cretaceous platform carbonates in the Benicàssim area (Maestrat Basin, Spain) to statistically characterize stylolite network morphology in a variety of typical shallow-marine lithofacies. Stylolites in each lithofacies were sampled in the field and different measuring techniques were applied. Grain size, sorting and composition were found to be the key lithological variables responsible for the development of rough anastomosing networks. A statistical workflow, requiring only limited subsurface information, relating stylolite morphology with lithofacies can subsequently be used to predict fluid flow behavior in stylolitised reservoirs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Structural Geology Contribution to the Africa-Eurasia Geology: Basement and Reservoir Structure, Ore Mineralisation and Tectonic Modelling
Subtitle of host publicationCAJG 2018
Number of pages3
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-01455-1
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-01454-4
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Publication series

NameAdvances in Science, Technology and Innovation
ISSN (Print)2522-8714

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019.


  • Carbonate
  • Diagenesis
  • Lithofacies
  • Maestrat basin
  • Stylolite


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