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Title: Heat Flow Density Estimations in the Portuguese Northern Hercynian Massif using Silica Geothermometry
Authors: Correia, Antonio
Ramalho, Elsa Cristina
Keywords: Silica geothermometry
Heat flow density
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Geothermal Resources Council
Abstract: Surface heat flow density (HFD) estimates in the Portuguese northern Hercynian Massif are difficult to obtain using the usual Fourier method. As a matter of fact, this zone is mostly composed by granitoid and metamorphic rocks, and most wells drilled there are too shallow for reliable HFD calculations; furthermore, HFD estimates are scarce and their geographical distribution is still very irregular. All these conditions imply that a HFD map for this region must be obtained using alternative methods, such as the silica geothermometry method. Under certain conditions, the use of silica geothermometers to estimate HFD in mineral waters has proved to be an effective way to understand and establish the thermal regime in areas with scarce conventional HFD determinations. Because temperatures obtained with silica geothermometry are related to deep thermal conditions in the crust and to water-rock equilibrium, a regional HFD analysis may be carried out using those temperatures. The silica geothermometer, developed by Truesdell in 1976 (Truesdell, 1976), give good results for low SiO2 concentrations, which is the case for the Portuguese northern Hercynian Massif, and is applied to more than 30 samples of mineral water occurrences reported for the zone. This number of samples, even though small, is considerably higher and more evenly distributed than conventional HFD estimates for the same area. Application of silica geothermometry to northern Hercynian Massif waters shows a discrete reservoir temperature zoning, ranging from about 45 ºC, in its southwest limit, to more than 120 ºC, towards its northeast limit. Using temperatures obtained by silica geothermometry and heat flow density values calculated through the conventional method in an area of 1º x 1º in the study zone, an empirical linear relationship between HFD and temperatures obtained by silica geothermometry is obtained and used to construct a HFD map for the Portuguese northern Hercynian Massif. The resulting HFD map is compared with the general geological and structural framework, and an attempt to a geothermal characterisation of the Portuguese northern Hercynian Massif is made.
ISBN: 0-934412-94-4
ISSN: 0193-5933
Type: article
Appears in Collections:CGE - Artigos em Livros de Actas/Proceedings

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