- Copyright © 2000 Society of Exploration Geophysicists
Examples from a recent land geophysical field program in the Central Apennines of southern Italy spotlight several uses of GIS as applied to exploration. The examples illustrate the application of inexpensive, fieldportable GIS tools to exploration survey planning, management, and QC.
Successful seismic data acquisition in the Central Apennine Mountains of southern Italy is a well-known challenge, from the point of view of conducting field operations and from the point of view of attaining good quality seismic data.
The Apennine Mountains, which run the length of and form the spine of the Italian peninsula, are characterized by rugged terrain—being formed principally by northeastward vergent-thrusted, folded, and faulted rocks of the so-called Apennine platform carbonate series. The difficult terrain hampers mobility of personnel and equipment, resulting in high seismic acquisition costs (e.g., roughly US $16 000 per line-kilometer). In addition, the regional stratigraphy is highly calcareous, consisting of some thick and monotonous platform carbonate, flysch, and molasse sequences. These factors pose a considerable challenge to acquisition of high quality data.
Because of these challenges, Forest Oil International in 1999 contracted AOA Geophysics to help design and manage a comprehensive nonseismic exploration field program in Forest's onshore Caserta Block (Figure 1). The nonseismic program was designed to provide permit-wide exploration reconnaissance at a cost comparable to that of a single 15-km seismic line. The goals of the nonseismic reconnaissance program were to identify prospective structural leads and optimize the locations of new seismic lines to be acquired in 2000 or later.