Inspiring New Prospectivity in the Italian Adriatic Basin
Vittorio Scisciani, Peter Shiner, and Claudio Turrini
The Italian sector of the Adriatic Basin is a long-established hydrocarbon province that recorded in the past a successful exploration history. In the northern Adriatic (Zones A and B), the main discoveries revealed numerous biogenic gas fields within the recent Pleistocene and Tertiary sedimentary cover. Toward the south in the Adriatic basin some heavy oil fields have been discovered in the Mesozoic carbonates of the Apulian shallow-water platform and in the transition to the pelagic basin. However, the deeper hydrocarbon potential of the entire Adriatic basin is long far to be fully explored. In the early 2011, Spectrum has completed the reprocessing of 8,200 km of regional vintage 2D seismic data in the Italian sector of the Adriatic Basin, that were acquired by the Italian government between the 1960s and 1970s. This new data library has been confidentially provided by Spectrum to INGEO Department of Chieti University. The spectacular improvement in seismic imaging performed by the grateful Spectrum’s reprocessing, allows to better understand: i) the structural evolution of the deformed Adriatic foreland that experienced a complex multi-phase tectonic history (e.g., basin inversion); ii) the structural-stratigraphical setting of the platform-to-basin transition and iii) the hydrocarbon potential within the Adriatic Basin. The high quality of the reprocessed seismic shows many undrilled structures associated to extension, compression or combination of both and several amplitude anomalies (most in Zone B), including DHI features of existing gas discoveries. The still in progress regional seismic interpretation and geological-structural modeling is revealing some new interesting leads that could be potential future prospects. This Adriatic project aims to bring new life to this forgotten petroleum province to and to inspire and stimulate the future hydrocarbon exploration.
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90161©2013 AAPG European Regional Conference, Barcelona, Spain, 8-10 April 2013