Accurately detecting and quantifying gas hydrate or free gas in sediments from seismic data require downhole well-log data to calibrate the physical properties of the gas hydrate-/free gas-bearing sediments. As part of the Gulf of Mexico Joint Industry Program, a series of wells were either cored or drilled in the Gulf of Mexico to characterize the physical properties of gas hydrate-bearing sediments, to calibrate geophysical estimates, and to evaluate source and transport mechanisms for gas within the gas hydrates. Downhole acoustic logs were used sparingly in this study because of degraded log quality due to adverse wellbore conditions. However, reliable logging while drilling (LWD) electrical resistivity and porosity logs were obtained. To tie the well-log information to the available 3-D seismic data in this area, a velocity log was calculated from the available resistivity log at the Keathley Canyon 151-2 well, because the acoustic log or vertical seismic data acquired at the nearby Keathley Canyon 151-3 well were either of poor quality or had limited depth coverage. Based on the gas hydrate saturations estimated from the LWD resistivity log, the modified Biot-Gassmann theory was used to generate synthetic acoustic log and a synthetic seismogram was generated with a fairly good agreement with a seismic profile crossing the well site. Based on the well-log information, a faintly defined bottom-simulating reflection (BSR) in this area is interpreted as a reflection representing gas hydrate-bearing sediments with about 15% saturation overlying partially gas-saturated sediments with 3% saturation. Gas hydrate saturations over 30-40% are estimated from the resistivity log in two distinct intervals at 220-230 and 264-300 m below the sea floor, but gas hydrate was not physically recovered in cores. It is speculated that the poor recovery of cores and gas hydrate morphology are responsible for the lack of physical gas hydrate recovery.
Additional publication details
Integrated analysis of well logs and seismic data to estimate gas hydrate concentrations at Keathley Canyon, Gulf of Mexico