Satellites detected natural petroleum springs

07 Июня 2011
В СМИ (до 2012)
Within the frames of the Black Sea oil pollutions monitoring program natural oil sources were detected in south-eastern part out at sea of the town of Poti, Georgia. The source was detected based on analysis of multi-temporal radar satellite images by the scientists of the Shirshov Institute of Oceanology together with the specialists of the ScanEx Research & Development Center.

Analysis of radar images enabled to detect the connection between the oil seeps, visible on the sea surface and the process of formation and migration of hydrocarbons in sedimentary complex of the south-eastern part of the Black Sea. Based on the analysis of spots, detected on 16 multi-temporal radar images, acquired over the 1993 to 2011 period, the GeoMixer web-mapping application helped defining the location of the source on the sea bottom. The coordinated of the source are 41є58"59""N and 41є07"30""E at the depth of 1050 meters and it erupts once in 0.3-5 hours. First reliable monitoring of this spring from space using radar was made in December 1993.

Such a natural infiltration of oil is one of the typical phenomena in this part of the Black Sea. Oil seepage volumes assessments can be made by measuring the acreage of oil slicks on radar images and based on simple physical considerations, connecting the thickness of oil slick with its color that varies from iridescent on the place of emergence to silver-grey on the spot edges, - explained Senior Researcher of the Shirshov Institute of Oceanology Andrei Ivanov.

According to estimates of the institute specialists the oil-in-place relief in south-eastern part of the Black Sea only from this source (if recurrent discharge trend remains) may constitute on average from 1 to 8 tons of oil per day or 400 to 3000 tons per year. The maximum possible estimates of volumes of natural oils seepage in this place according to space radar data may reach 7000 tons of oil per year.


Published: GeoConnexion (http://www.geoconnexion.com/geo_online_article/Satellites-detected-natural-petroleum-springs-/415)

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