Title: Enhancing crustal and sedimentary structure of North Atlantic rift basins in hyperextended passive margins
Researchers: Dr Manel Prada, Dr Brian O'Reilly
The project “Enhancing crustal and sedimentary structure of North Atlantic rift basins in hyperextended passive margins” started in October 2016, and aims at the assessment of crustal and sedimentary physical properties at hyperextended basins from seismic velocity models. The research proposed in this project will assist in the design, analysis and interpretation of existing seismic data of all types. A new software will be developed and designed to interrogate velocity models of basin structure obtained from reflection and refraction active-source data to extract information regarding petrological properties, linkages with seismic stratigraphy and crustal scale tectonic processes, as well as deeper ones in the subcrustal lithosphere. The idea and method are recently proven (with application to the Porcupine Basin) but considerably more research and development of the theory and method are required. The key to the approach is the integration of all geophysical and geological data to analyse basin evolution at a basin-wide to intra-basinal scale. This will mitigate risk by providing insight into, for example, structural controls on basin stratigraphy/sedimentology and heat flow history. These are relevant to understanding petroleum systems at different scales. A key part of the proposed research is the incorporation of seismic imaging tools to invert for travel times from ENI long-streamer (10 km) data. The outcome of this last tomographic approach will be used to invert the wave form of the seismic trace at different frequencies and obtain high resolution velocity models of the sedimentary structure of Atlantic basins, such as the Rockall Trough and the Porcupine Basin (collaborative work with iGRAG seismic imaging Spoke: Geophysics PD4). Method and software tools developed will provide information on the mode of extensional deformation, magmatism, thermal history, exhumation events, petrological/petrophysical and facies composition.