Sequence stratigraphic evolution of the syn-rift Early Cretaceous sediments, West Beni Suef Basin, the Western Desert of Egypt with remarks on its hydrocarbon accumulations

  • Amer A. ShehataEmail author
  • Farouk M. El Fawal
  • Makoto Ito
  • Mohammed H. Abdel Aal
  • Mohammad A. Sarhan
Original Paper


The Beni Suef Basin is a petroliferous rift basin straddling the River Nile containing a thick Mesozoic–Paleogene succession. The Kharita Formation is formed in the syn-rift phase of the basin formation and is subdivided into the Lower and Upper Kharita members. These two members are regarded as two third-order depositional sequences (DSQ-1 and DSQ-2). The lowstand systems tract (LST-1) of the DSQ-1 is represented by thick amalgamated sandstone bodies deposited by active braided channels. Mid-Albian tectonic subsidence led to a short-lived marine invasion which produced coastal marine and inner-shelf facies belts during an ensuing transgressive systems tract (TST-1). At the end of the mid-Albian, a phase of tectonic uplift gradually rose the continent creating a fall in relative sea level, resulting in deposition of shallow marine and estuarine facies belts during a highstand systems tract (HST-1). During the Late Albian, a new phase of land-rejuvenation commenced, with a prolonged phase of fluvial depositional. Fluvial deposits consisted of belts of amalgamated, vertically aggraded sandstones interpreted as braided and moderately sinuous channels, in the lower part of the Upper Kharita Member lowstand stage (LST-2). The continuous basin filling, coupled with significant lowering in the surrounding highlands changed the drainage regime into a wide belt of meandering river depositing the transgressive stage (TST-2). The history of the Kharita Formation finalized with a Cenomanian marine transgressive phase. Economically, the TST-1 and HST-1 play a significant role as source rocks for hydrocarbon accumulations, whereas LST-2 act as good reservoir rocks in the Early Cretaceous in the Basin.


Sequence stratigraphic evolution Early Cretaceous syn-rift successions Hydrocarbon accumulations West Beni Suef Basin Egypt 



The authors are grateful to the authorities of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation and Qarun Petroleum Company for providing the necessary subsurface data presented in this work and permission to publish this paper. Many thanks are due to the Egyptian Government for the Channel Mission of Amer A. Shehata to Chiba University. The language of the manuscript has been revised and polished by Dr. Hannah Brooks, Research Fellow, Faculty of Science and Engineering at Chiba University, Japan.


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Copyright information

© Saudi Society for Geosciences 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amer A. Shehata
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Farouk M. El Fawal
    • 1
  • Makoto Ito
    • 2
  • Mohammed H. Abdel Aal
    • 3
  • Mohammad A. Sarhan
    • 4
  1. 1.Geology Department, Faculty of SciencePort Said UniversityPort SaidEgypt
  2. 2.Department of Earth SciencesChiba UniversityChibaJapan
  3. 3.Biology and Geology Department, Faculty of EducationAin Shams UniversityCairoEgypt
  4. 4.Geology Department, Faculty of ScienceDamietta UniversityNew Damietta CityEgypt

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