How are waves used to detect petroleum underground?

I’m doing a physics project related to waves, and i was wondering how geoscientists use waves to find petroleum underground (at sea and on land)
If you know any sites with this information, please share the info.

6 Responses to “How are waves used to detect petroleum underground?”

  1. Steve W Says:

    Just to add to the above – they typically already know the general geology in the area, and they are looking at the formations, rock types, and depths consistent with places that they’ve found oil at before. E.g. – there may be a sandstone layer in the region that usually has natural gas in it, so they’re checking with their seismic tools for the depth, thickness, and shape of that sandstone formation to see if it consistent with other good finds in the area.

    There is much more guesswork involved in areas where they have not already drilled extensively. For example, when they do seismic in the ocean, they are checking for formation types and depths, but they have less offset information to use so there is a great deal of guesswork in that environment.

  2. Kelly Says:

    Sound waves travel through liquid differently than a solid. They use sonar to measure those differences to pinpoint where something other than solid rock exists.

  3. carpetao Says:

    Seismic waves are used to examine underground structures. This works because they travel through different materials at different speeds. A series of waves are generated at one point and received at another. The variation in speed and timing at the receiving end can be translated into an underground "map" of structures.

    Radar waves are also used to detect structures underground, although I do not believe they are useful in detecting petroleum. Radar works by sending out electromagnetic waves, having them bounce off a target and examining the nature of the returning waves.

  4. qfl247 Says:

    Geophysists use seismic waves (NOT sonar or radar unless it’s very shallow) to penetrate the ground and look for oil and gas. Most of the time, they do not have the resolution to find the oil itself (it’s usually to localized), but they look for structures (anticlines, faults) that often trap oil. Once those are located, they can drill a test well and hope for a gusher.

  5. subhash Says:

    here is no anything perfect written that how to detect petrolium.this is only in thought not in practical.it is done by 100% by propagating the wave under ground where the petrolium is guessed.

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