From: Berhane Habtemariam (Berhane.Habtemariam@gmx.de)
Date: Fri Apr 08 2011 - 15:39:10 EDT
First Consistent Geological Interpretation Of East Africa Rift System
by Staff Writers
Leicester, UK (SPX) Apr 08, 2011
Astrium GEO-Information Services has completed a geological interpretation
study of the East Africa Rift System (EARS) and the surrounding area that is
increasingly becoming an exploration hotspot for the Oil, Gas and Minerals
For the first time, these organisations can have access to an
'off-the-shelf' set of integrated data to highlight the hydrocarbon
prospectivity and oil seeps in the region.
Andrew Stroomer, UK Managing Director of Astrium GEO-Information Services
said: "The East African Rift System is increasingly viewed as a hydrocarbon
exploration hotspot, particularly given recent discoveries in the Albertine
Rift and offshore Tanzania.
Covering approximately 4.5 million square km, our study provides exploration
companies with a consistent interpretation of the surface geology and the
location of hydrocarbon seeps in the region.
"Previously organisations would have had to amalgamate existing datasets -
sometimes paper-based - that weren't always consistent, so the availability
of this 'off-the-shelf' East Africa data in a digital format should speed up
the exploration process and enable increased accuracy," adds Andrew
The study covers Eritrea, Djibouti, Somaliland, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya,
Malawi, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania and Mozambique, and is based on Earth
Observation data that has been fully integrated with the East Africa and
African lakes seeps studies.
The interpretation work is based on 15m Landsat 7 ETM+ imagery combined with
a 90m SRTM elevation model providing customers with geomorphology and
lithological information at the same time.
It fully integrates all datasets needed to assess and highlight the
hydrocarbon prospectivity, including structural and stratigraphic
interpretations, capture of major drainage channels and water bodies, and
oil seep locations as points and vectors of slick outlines.
It also includes radar imagery for key areas, extracts from the oil seeps
database covering major rift lakes, as well as hardcopy map sheets at 1:500
By combining the interpretation with the identified hydrocarbon seeps their
geological context can be readily assessed. Surface evidence for several
phases of rifting can be identified from the remote sensing data, with
significant overprinting between events.
The study also demonstrates that oil seeps predominately occur in the
extensive lakes within the Western Branch of the Rift including Lake Albert,
Edward and Tanganyika.
With 25 years' experience working closely with exploration companies,
Astrium GEO-Information Services is committed to developing valuable
geo-information to support exploration companies worldwide.
A similar study was recently completed for Iraq and the Zagros Fold Belt /
Iran. The next area of focus will be the Eastern Mediterranean, where
Astrium plans to interpret both on and offshore data.
Astrium GEO-Information Services will be attending its first major Oil and
Gas sector event under its new entity at the upcoming AAPG Annual Convention
- AAPG 2011 - 10-13 April in Houston, Texas USA. Astrium GEO-Information
Services was previously known as Infoterra Ltd before it 'teamed-up' with
SPOT Image in December 2010.
By combining the interpretation study with identified hydrocarbon seeps, the
geological context of seeps can be readily assessed
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