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Abstract: 3-D Seismic Reveals Potential New Play in Shallow Water

Marc A. Lawrence, Louise S. Durham, Hugh T. Logue

Recently acquired shallow water 3-D seismic data from the West Cameron and High Island areas in the Gulf of Mexico reveal deep subsurface features previously imaged only sporadically on 2-D data. The new, deeper penetrating and higher resolution 3-D data reveal a potentially prospective zone between 4.5-5.0 seconds (22,000-25,000 ft), which is characterized by an unconformable, regionally mapable decollement zone. Productive, overlying structures associated with major fault systems which sole out on this horizon are generally known. Massive structures that have never been tested with the drillbit are now readily apparent below the decollement.

The regional nature of this deep zone is presented with its relationship to shallower producing fields. Preliminary examination of the new data reveals a correlation between shallower fields and associated major fault systems and the deeper prospective horizons. This scenario suggests that the deep zone may be in communication with and charging the shallower reservoirs with hydrocarbons, analogous to the documented petroleum migration phenomenon at Eugene Island block 330 field.

Further geological investigations would be crucial in placing these new findings in perspective and to help evaluate the potential for a new, deeper play in the shallow waters of the Gulf.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90955©1995 GCAGS 45th Annual Meeting and Gulf Section SEPM, Baton Rouge, Louisiana