Improved salt imaging in a basin context by high resolution potential field data: Nordkapp Basin, Barents Sea
C. Stadtler, C. Fichler, K. Hokstad, E.A. Myrlund, S. Wienecke and B. Fotland
Journal name: Geophysical Prospecting
Issue: Vol 62, No 3, May 2014 pp. 615 - 630
Info: Article, PDF ( 1.75Mb )
The seismic imaging of salt diapirs in the Nordkapp Basin gave rise to considerable problems in defining their shape and volume. Independent information was added by integrating the interpretation with high resolution gravity and magnetic data. We developed a novel, iterative workflow, separated into sub-categories: sediments, salt structures, basement and Moho. Distinctions between the sources of the anomalies from different depths was achieved by utilizing the different decay characteristics of gravity, gravity gradiometry and high resolution magnetic anomalies. The workflow was applied to the southern part of the Nordkapp Basin. It started with the sedimentary model derived from seismics, populated with measured densities and magnetic susceptibilities and a starting model for the base salt. The residual after the removal of this model was interpreted in terms of a crustal model, including flexural isostatic calculations for the Moho with the sedimentary load. The residual after the removal of crustal and early sedimentary model was used to tune the salt model. As these major and minor modelling steps depend on each other, an iterative process was applied to stepwise improve the density and magnetic susceptibility model. The first vertical gradient of gravity and the magnetic field were found to give most information about the cap rock of the diapirs. The improvement in salt imaging, integrated with results from controlled-source electromagnetic and magneto-telluric modelling is shown for the salt diapir Uranus, where a well, terminated in the salt, constrains the minimum of the depth to base salt.