Marine seismic reflection data acquired across the Gulf of Mexico during oil and gas exploration are available to the public through an online database archive. The data are archived as two-dimensional multichannel seismic data in two digital formats. The formats include image files in portable document format (PDF), and binary files in industry standard Society for Exploration Geophysicists revision Y (SEG-Y) format. Also included in the database are navigation files and acquisition information associated with the collection of the data.
This study examines the data acquired within two geographic areas in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Although the seismic reflection data are acquired for oil and gas exploration many kilometers below the seafloor, this study focuses on the feasibility of using the data for near-surface geologic and seafloor morphologic studies (<100 meters below the seafloor). The report outlines the methodologies used to recover and process the data, including computer processing steps to convert the PDF imagery into SEG-Y format. The report includes two-dimensional profiles of the data to demonstrate the efficacy of the data in near-surface geologic studies. The study found that, for the two areas of interest, the seafloor reflectors in most of the available data are not resolvable. Although the data are readily available and computer processing can adequately image the uppermost reflectors of the seismic profiles, the resolution of the data in most cases are not suitable for near-surface geologic evaluations.
|Title||Evaluating oil and gas industry two-dimensional multichannel seismic data for use in near-surface assessment of geologic framework and potential marine minerals resources|
|Authors||James G. Flocks, Arnell S. Forde, Stephen T. Bosse|
|Publication Subtype||USGS Numbered Series|
|Series Title||Techniques and Methods|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center|