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Subsalt Imaging Over the Mahogany Salt Sill

Davis W. Ratcliff, David J. Weber

Exploring for hydrocarbons below salt has been, and will continue to be, a high risk/high potential business endeavor. Recent subsalt discoveries have generated a tremendous interest in subsalt exploration, both in the Gulf of Mexico as well as in other basins around the world. The geophysical technology which has played the most significant role in the success of subsalt exploration is, by far, Depth Imaging. Depth imaging technology (poststack and Previous HitprestackNext Hit) has allowed explorationists to identify and map structural and stratigraphic features below salt that trap significant hydrocarbon accumulations.

In this paper, we discuss subsalt imaging strategies and technology applications (Previous Hit3-DNext Hit Previous HitTimeNext Hit and Depth Previous HitMigrationNext Hit) that can assist the subsalt explorationist in prospect evaluation, risk assessment, well placement and field development, using the Mahogany Salt Sill Area as a calibration point. In addition to utilizing a specific "subsalt" acquisition geometry, the collective processing strategy will incorporate 2-D Previous HittimeNext Hit imaging, 2-D poststack depth Previous HitmigrationNext Hit 2-D Previous HitprestackNext Hit depth Previous HitmigrationNext Hit, wide-line profiling, Previous Hit3-DNext Hit Previous HittimeNext Hit imaging, Previous Hit3-DNext Hit poststack depth Previous HitmigrationNext Hit and "target oriented" Previous Hit3-DNext Hit Previous HitprestackNext Hit depth Previous HitmigrationTop.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91020©1995 AAPG Annual Convention, Houston, Texas, May 5-8, 1995