Results from a High-resolution, 3-D Marine Gravity Gradiometry Survey over a Buried Salt Structure, Mississippi Canyon Area, Gulf of Mexico
Lincoln F. Pratson, Robin E. Bell, Roger N. Anderson, Dan Dosch, John White, Clive Affleck, Andrew Grierson, Bryant E. Korn, Ronald L. Phair, E. K. Biegert, Peter E. Gale, 1998. "Results from a High-resolution, 3-D Marine Gravity Gradiometry Survey over a Buried Salt Structure, Mississippi Canyon Area, Gulf of Mexico", Geologic Applications of Gravity and Magnetics: Case Histories, Richard I. Gibson, Patrick S. Millegan
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The first test of the Bell Aerospace gravity Gradiometry Survey System (GSS) for geologic applications was conducted in April 1994 in collaboration with the U.S. Navy. The GSS is a recently declassified gravity sensing system that contains the world's only moving-base gravity gradiometer. The system measures both gravitational acceleration and gravity gradients, yielding six measurements that define the local gravity field and its gradients in three dimensions a technologic advance in measuring gravity analogous to the advance from 2-D to 3-D seismic profiling through the towing of multiple rather than single hydrophone arrays. The gravity gradiometry test survey was conducted over a buried salt structure southsoutheast of New Orleans in water depths of ˜1500 m. The quality of the survey data is excellent. In declassified grids of the data at 2-km wavelengths, gravity gradients are resolved to 0.5 and gravity to 0.07 mGal. Simple models are used to illustrate the power of this data in subsurface structure definition. The potential utility of gravity gradiometry in oil and gas exploration then is demonstrated through application of the survey data in improving a geologic model of a part of the survey area derived from 3-D seismic data.