In 2012 the GEMMA project funded by Politecni-co di Milano and the European Space Agency, through the Support To Science Element pro-gramme (Contract No. 4000102372/10/I-AM) demonstrated the possibility to exploit GOCE gravity data to model the main features of the crust both globally and regionally.
The use of satellite data for this activity in fact, offers the main advantage of giving a regional outline of the crustal architecture that cannot be obtained by local seismic profiles or gravity ob-servations.
This dataset can be profitably used in the so called “Assets e Prospects” operation which takes place before the upstream activities.
In 2015 ESA, through the Value Adding Element (VAE) program, funded a new project (Contract No. 4000117591/16/I-NB), called GIULIA (Gravity Inversion to Understand LIthosfheric Architecture), in order to understand the possibility to ex-ploit GOCE satellite data for oil & gas ex-plorations activities.
Basically the project consists in analyzing the characteristics of freely available data-set and conducting an example of crustal structure estimation on a test area (the Le-vant has been chosen as test area).
THE LEVANT TEST CASE
The Levant test case, studied within the GIULIA project, shows how gravity models based on the ESA satellite mission GOCE can be proficiently used to obtain infor-mation useful for oil & gas exploration pur-poses.
GOCE data can help in defining homogene-ous (from the density point of view) geologi-cal regions and in giving information on the nature of the studied crust.
Moreover the inversion of the gravitational field, properly complemented by external information such as density models, seismic profiles, etc. allows to estimate the Moho and the basement depth.
The results allow to build a 3D density model of the region correlated by maps defining the estimated accuracy of each discontinuity.
Main Outputs that are retrieved from GOCE data analysis can be summarized as:
• Map of main geological provinces refined by exploiting a GOCE based gravity field model;
• Depth of the Moho discontinuity;
• Estimated Moho depth accuracy obtained by means of Monte Carlo analysis;
• Refined 3D density model of the region. In particular a scale factor for the density function of each geological model has been estimated.