23rd March 2021
Speaker: Jonathan Watson – Bridgeporth
Topic: Current developments in gravity gradiometry and its role in assisting hydrocarbon exploration
Airborne geophysical acquisition has always been a useful preliminary tool in both petroleum and mineral exploration. Historically seen as a regional scoping tool, recent advances in the instrumentation, particularly in gravity gradiometry, has led to significant increases in level of detail. By acquiring multiple datasets (gravity gradiometry, gravity, magnetics, LiDAR, hyperspectral), on one acquisition platform, and integrating with existing seismic and well data, detailed subsurface interpretation can be achieved at relatively low-cost. This then paves the way for focused follow up work such as 3D seismic acquisition and well planning.
Advances in gravity gradiometry, both in instrumentation and acquisition has led to a next-step level of resolution and sensitivity. New systems, such as the Lockheed-Martin eFTG (enhanced Full Tensor Gravity Gradiometry), deliver significantly increased signal-to-noise levels that has led to the ability to detect smaller, deeper, more subtle subsurface density changes, but also to allow increased daily production, less down-time and bespoke flight plans which all leads to faster, more efficient, high-quality surveys.