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First Images and Orientation of Fine Structure from a 3-D Seismic Oceanography Data Set

journal contribution
posted on 20.04.2010, 00:00 by W. Steven Holbrook, Tanya M. Blacic
We present 3-D images of ocean fine structure from a unique industry-collected 3-D multichannel seismic dataset from the Gulf of Mexico that includes expendable bathythermograph casts for both swaths. 2-D processing reveals strong laterally continuous reflections throughout the upper ~800m as well as a few weaker but still distinct reflections as deep as ~1100 m. We interpret the reflections to be caused by reversible fine structure from internal wave strains. Two bright reflections are traced across the 225-m wide swath to produce reflection surface images that illustrate the 3-D nature of ocean fine structure. We show that the orientation of linear features in a reflection can be obtained by calculating the orientations of contours of reflection relief, or more robustly, by fitting a sinusoidal surface to the reflection. Preliminary 3-D processing further illustrates the potential of 3-D seismic data in interpreting images of oceanic features such as internal wave strains. This work demonstrates the viability of imaging oceanic fine structure in 3-D and shows that, beyond simply providing a way visualize oceanic fine structure, quantitative information such as the spatial orientation of features like fronts and solitons can be obtained from 3-D seismic images. We expect complete, optimized 3-D processing to improve both the signal to noise ratio and spatial resolution of our images resulting in increased options for analysis and interpretation.

History

ISO

eng

Language

English

Publisher

University of Wyoming. Libraries

Journal title

Ocean Science

Collection

Faculty Publication - Geology & Geophysics