University of Texas at Austin

Processing and Interpreting Multicomponent Seismic Data: Gulf of Mexico Seafloor Observatory

Bob A. Hardage, principal investigator; Sergey B. Fomel, Paul E. Murray, and Paul C. Sava

The Exploration Geophysics Laboratory (EGL) is a subcontractor to the Mississippi Mineral Resources Institute (MMRI) in this study. MMRI has received funding from a variety of sources (DOE, MMS, NOOA) to construct a seafloor observatory across a gas-hydrate system in Mississippi Canyon Block 118. EGL's responsibilities are to process and interpret seismic data acquired by the horizontal and vertical arrays of 1-C and 4-C seismic sensors that will be deployed across the observatory. Downgoing P waves from three types of sources will be used to illuminate gas-hydrate strata: conventional surface-positioned air-gun arrays, noise from passing ships, and wind-driven ocean-surface waves. Data will be acquired in a continuous round-the-clock mode when wind-driven surface waves are the imaging source. Data acquisition will be repeated at appropriate calendar-time intervals to investigate dynamic processes that occur in gas-hydrate systems.


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CO, DO: Horizontal array (400 m long)
DC: Data Cable
DRS: Data recovery ship
DSS: Data storage system
F: Float
SSD: Station service device
VA1: Water-column vertical array (200 m)
VA2: Subsea vertical array (150 m)
W: Weight (disposable)

The principal components of the seafloor observatory that will operate in Mississippi Canyon Block 118.

For more information, please contact Mark Shuster, principal investigator.
Telephone 512-471-7090; e-mail