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.