Characterising Gas Hydrate Deposits on New Zealand's Southern Hikurangi Margin using Seismic Reflection Data

Author: Wang, Hanyan

Date: 2016

Type: Scholarly text, Masters

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Victoria University of Wellington


Reprocessed Bruin 2D seismic data (recorded in 2006) from New Zealand Hikurangi Margin are presented and analyzed to show the presence of gas hydrates. We choose six seismic lines that each showed bottom-simulating reflections (BSRs) that are important indicators for the presence of gas hydrate. The aim is to obtain a higher resolution image of the shallow subsurface structures and determine the nature of the gas hydrate system in this area. To further investigate the presence of Gas Hydrates was undertaken. There is a strong correlation between anomalous velocities and the depths of BSRs, which supports the presence of gas hydrates in the research area and is useful for detecting areas of both free gas and gas hydrate along the seismic lines. The combination of high-resolution seismic imaging and velocity analysis is the key method for showing the distribution of gas hydrates and gas pockets in our research area. The results indicate that the distribution of both free gas and gas hydrate is strongly localized. The Discussion Chapter gives several concentrated gas hydrate deposits in the research area. Idealized scenarios for the formation of the gas hydrates are proposed. In terms of identifying concentrated gas hydrate deposits we propose the identification of the following key seismic attributes: 1) existence of BSRs, 2) strong reflections above BSRs in the gas hydrate stability zone, 3) enhanced reflections related to free gas below BSRs, 4) appropriate velocity anomalies (i.e. low velocity zones beneath BSRs and localized high-velocity zones above BSRs). This study contributes to the understanding of the geological conditions and processes that drives the deposition of concentrated gas hydrate deposits on this part of the Hikurangi Margin.

Subjects: Gas Hydrate, Hikurangi Margin, Seismic Relfection