Abstract

A combination of prestack elastic inversion with gravity modeling has been applied to a shallow seismic anomaly in the southern Barents Sea. The anomaly is crosscutting dipping layers of late Paleocene age. Earlier seismic interpretations indicate a possible origin in gas-hydrated sediments trapping underlying free gas. Our interpretation includes seismic inversion of a seismic model which consists of a stack of isotropic, homogeneous, and anelastic layers. The unknown parameters are the P- and S-wave velocities, density, and thickness for each layer. As densities are poorly determined by this method, we included gravity modeling, which improved the density estimates. The resulting parameters have been integrated by rock physics calculations and the knowledge of typical attributes of gas hydrate occurrences. The top of the seismic anomaly is interpreted as a reflection from the base of a gas-hydrated sediment trapping underlying free gas. The base of the anomaly is the gas-water contact, which deviates from a flat spot due to capillary pressure differences related to lithology and the generation process of gas hydrate. The estimated density has been interpreted together with well results and indicates a significant amount of gas filling the pore volume.

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