Mapping Alteration Caused by Hydrocarbon Microseepages in Patrick Draw area Southwest Wyoming Using Image Spectroscopy and Hyperspectral Remote Sensing
Mapping Alteration Caused by Hydrocarbon Microseepages in Patrick Draw area Southwest Wyoming Using Image Spectroscopy and Hyperspectral Remote Sensing Detection of underlying reservoir accumulations using remote sensing techniques had its inception with the identification of macroseeps. However, today we find ourselves relying on the detection of more subtle characteristics associated with petroleum reservoirs, such as microseeps. Microseepages are the result of vertical movement of light hydrocarbons from the reservoir to the surface through networks of fractures, faults, and bedding planes that provide permeable routes within the overlying rock. Microseepages express themselves at the surface in an array of alterations and anomalies, such as chemical or mineralogical changes in overlying soils and sediments. Using NASA's Hyperion hyperspectral imaging sensors, this project has developed spectral and geochemical ground truthing techniques to identify and map alterations caused by hydrocarbon microseepages and to determine their relationships to the underlying geology in the Patrick Draw area of Southwest Wyoming. Training the classification of satellite imagery with spectral inputs of samples collected over previously defined areas of hydrocarbon microseepage resulted in the successful identification of an anomalous zone. Geochemical characteristics of samples that defined this anomalous zone were then compared to the remaining non-anomalous samples using XRD, ICP, spectroscopy and carbon isotope techniques.
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