Structural controls on the positioning of submarine channels on the lower slopes of the Niger Delta
Richard Morgan, 2004. "Structural controls on the positioning of submarine channels on the lower slopes of the Niger Delta", 3D Seismic Technology: Application to the Exploration of Sedimentary Basins, Richard J. Davies, Joseph A. Cartwright, Simon A. Stewart, Mark Lappin, John R. Underhill
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Recently acquired 2D seismic data shot over the western Niger Delta have enabled a pre-delta rift framework to be delineated inshore of a transform fault dominated continental margin which lies beneath the later, delta sediment apron. The delta apron has been deformed by toe-of-slope thrusting where faults have climbed from a detachment surface at or near the top of the over-pressured Akata Formation mudstones. The overlying mixed clastic succession of the Agbada Formation has been faulted by a broadly oceanward stepping series of NW-SE trending thrusts climbing from this detachment level. The principal thrusts have been offset by NE-SW trending transfer zones, the positions of which have been inherited from trends within a pre-delta rift framework that underlies part of the western delta slope.
3D seismic data partly covering the 2D grid show turbidite channel complexes at numerous stratigraphic levels within the Agbada Formation and clustered in particular areas of the slope. Commonly, submarine channels can be seen to have cut through the relief caused by folding at the positions of intersection with transfer fault zones. These data show the relationship between structure and channel formation and highlight the importance of transfer fault zones in localizing channel systems on the lower slope. Nevertheless, the 2D seismic data has provided an explanation for the location of the transfer zones within the toe-thrust belt in the form of an underlying structural framework, and both data types have contributed to the understanding of controls on reservoir distribution in an area where the principal sand delivery systems are perpendicular to the main structural trend.
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3D Seismic Technology: Application to the Exploration of Sedimentary Basins
A ‘new age’ of subsurface geological mapping that is just as far ranging in scope as the frontier source geological mapping campaigns of the past two centuries in emerging. It is the direct result of the advent of 2D, and subsequently 3D, seismic data paralleled by advances in seismic acquisition and processing over the past three decades. Subsurface mapping is fuelled by the economic drive to explore and recover hydrocarbons but inevitably it will lead to major conceptual advances in Earth sciences, across a broader range of disciplines than those made during the 2D seismic revolution of the 1970s. Now that 3D seismic data coverage has increased and the technology is widely available we are poised to mine the full intellectual and economic benefits. This book illustrates how 3D seismic technology is being used to understand depositional systems and stratigraphy, structural and igneous geology, in developing and producing from hydrocarbon reservoirs and also what recent technological advances have been made. This technological journey is a fast-moving one where the remaining scientific potential still far exceeds the scope of the advances made thus far. This book explores the breadth of the opportunities that lie ahead as well as the inevitable accompanying challeges.