Oil and gas exploration is a complicated job but with the use of technology advancements, operators are able to de-risk drilling more than ever before. Seismic is a common exploration tool it is important to know the relevance of this technique.
Using seismic for exploration consists of artificially generating acoustic sound waves directed into the subsurface below ground. This purpose is to gather data and study/interpret the composition, fluid content, structural and lithological extent, and the geometry of the formations underground.
As one of the main techniques in the effort to search for oil and gas, seismic is basically the way of mapping the substructure of the Earth.
With technological advancements, seismic has gone even farther. 3-D seismic is now able to gather applied data and that is fully integrated. The seismic data provides a three dimensional view for maximum interpretation of the subsurface. The programs are designed in such a manor that the technical interpretation can be analyzed and viewed in a 360 degree image and geometrical assessment.
In the oil and gas industry, 3-D seismic data affords the technical team the ability to analyze the sub-surface for not only structural features but for changes in the lithology of the buried rock and its composition as the acoustical waves move throughout the Earth.
3-D seismic is used to locate, map, quantify and determine if a given subsurface contains trapped oil and gas reserves. It will provide images within the seismic data that contain “bright spots”. These features are often exhibited as seismic amplitudes. The amplitude is an event in the acoustical activity where the content of a given reservoir reveals sound wave measurements that are distinct, different, and measurable. This indicates to the technical team that there is a strong potential of a non-rock subject matter is present i.e. oil or gas.
Having technical data like that from 3-d seismic can lower exploration risks and provide an economic measurement of the targeted reservoir size, content and extraction costs. All of this can be done before drilling and is a tool used to de-risk a well. Modern exploration demands science applications and the use of advanced exploration tools that can be applied in order to make a decision on a given prospect.
Seismic allows capital partners and investors to compare data on a potential well and determine if the information is in favor for drilling. Oil and gas is trapped beneath the surface and seismic gives the industry eyes to see where to drill for success!