ABSTRACT

We have studied an approximately 40-hr recording from the Life of Field Seismic array installed over Ekofisk field to assess whether the recorded ambient seismic energy was suitable for passive seismic surface-wave interferometry. Passive seismic interferometry aims to retrieve virtual seismic sources by crosscorrelation. We have found that the noise recorded by the pressure sensors between 0.4 and 1.4 Hz consisted predominantly of Scholte-wave microseism energy. The noise incidence directions have an almost uniform distribution over the azimuth, enabling the synthesis of nearly symmetric estimated Green’s functions between all stations in the array that formed virtual seismic sources. These sources were dominated by Scholte waves traveling along the seafloor, and we sought to determine which features in the subsurface can be imaged by straight-ray group-velocity tomography. We located a high-velocity anomaly in the center of Ekofisk’s production-induced subsidence bowl, surrounded by lower velocities. This pattern seemed to result from production-induced seafloor subsidence that altered the near-surface shear strengths. A dispersion analysis showed that the Scholte-wave virtual seismic source exhibited an approximate penetration depth to 600 m below the seafloor. These results are significant because they demonstrated that recordings made at the ocean-bottom cable array at Ekofisk field in the absence of seismic shooting can be used to image and monitor the near surface.

You do not currently have access to this article.