Abstract

Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic prospecting is generally perceived as a very expensive tool that is not suitable for use by other than major oil companies or for the solution of conventional exploration geophysics problems. We illustrate how 3-D techniques were used to provide a very cost-effective solution to a specific exploration project. A basic geologic and historical seismic outline establishes the economic and environmental framework for the survey. Drilling results and comparisons with conventional data illustrate the effectiveness of the 3-D approach.This survey was carried out during February of 1982 in the Black Creek basin of northwestern Alberta. Prolific and abundant Devonian Keg River pinnacle reefs with reserves in the 0.2 to 100 million barrel recoverable categories provide the exploration target. A prospective area of approximately 6 mi 2 was covered with a 165 ft subsurface grid of 1200 percent CDP data. Field data were acquired with a conventional 96-trace dynamite crew using a rolling, crossed-array technique. Data processing was carried out with a flexible, conventional seismic processing package, including wavelet deconvolution, surface-consistent statics, 3-D migration, and geologic slice displays. Total cost of the survey was $50,000 Canadian per sq mi.This paper demonstrates the interpretive power of 3-D surveys.

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