A drilling and coring investigation of the Sagara oil field, central Honshu, Japan, was conducted to contribute to the understanding of hydrocarbon migration processes in a forearc basin. Core samples were analyzed to determine lithology, physical properties (specifically gas permeability) and the characteristics of oil occurrence. Gas permeability values greater than approximately 10(-11) m(2) constitute the basic precondition for any lithology to serve as a potential fluid conduit or reservoir in the Sagara oil field. Cores recovered from the 200.6-m-deep borehole were primarily composed of alternating siltstone, sandstone and conglomerate, all of which are correlated to the late Miocene Sagara Group. Both sandstone and conglomerate can be classified into two types, carbonate-cemented and poorly to non-cemented, based on matrix material characteristics. Oil stains are generally absent in the former lithology and more common in the latter. Variations in physical properties with respect to gas permeability values are directly related to the presence and character of carbonate cement, with higher permeabilities common in poorly to non-cemented rocks. The relationships between lithology, oil-staining, cementation and permeability indicate that cementation preceded oil infiltration and that cementation processes exerted significant control on the evolution of the reservoir.
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