Exploration Geophysics Exploration Geophysics Society
Journal of the Australian Society of Exploration Geophysicists
RESEARCH ARTICLE (Open Access)

Seismic imaging for an ocean drilling site survey and its verification in the Izu rear arc

Mikiya Yamashita 1 3 Narumi Takahashi 1 Yoshihiko Tamura 2 Seiichi Miura 1 Shuichi Kodaira 1
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

1 R&D Center for Earthquake and Tsunami, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, 3173-25 Showa-machi, Kanazawa-ku, Yokohama 236-0001, Japan.

2 R&D Center for Ocean Drilling Science, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, 2-15 Natsushima-cho, Yokosuka 237-0061, Japan.

3 Corresponding author. Email: mikiya@jamstec.go.jp

Exploration Geophysics - https://doi.org/10.1071/EG16142
Submitted: 15 November 2016  Accepted: 17 November 2016   Published online: 9 January 2017
Originally submitted to SEGJ 24 June 2016, accepted 31 October 2016  

Abstract

To evaluate the crustal structure of a site proposed for International Ocean Discovery Program drilling, the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology carried out seismic surveys in the Izu rear arc between 2006 and 2008, using research vessels Kaiyo and Kairei. High-resolution dense grid surveys, consisting of three kinds of reflection surveys, generated clear seismic profiles, together with a seismic velocity image obtained from a seismic refraction survey. In this paper, we compare the seismic profiles with the geological column obtained from the drilling. Five volcaniclastic sedimentary units were identified in seismic reflection profiles above the 5 km/s and 6 km/s contours of P-wave velocity obtained from the velocity image from the seismic refraction survey. However, some of the unit boundaries interpreted from the seismic images were not recognised in the drilling core, highlighting the difficulties of geological target identification in volcanic regions from seismic images alone. The geological core derived from drilling consisted of seven lithological units (labelled I to VII). Units I to V were aged at 0–9 Ma, and units VI and VII, from 1320–1806.5 m below seafloor (mbsf) had ages from 9 to ~15 Ma. The strong heterogeneity of volcanic sediments beneath the drilling site U1437 was also identified from coherence, calculated using cross-spectral analysis between grid survey lines. Our results suggest that use of a dense grid configuration is important in site surveys for ocean drilling in volcanic rear-arc situations, in order to recognise heterogeneous crustal structure, such as sediments from different origins.

Key words: grid site survey, multi-channel seismic reflection survey, ocean drilling, refraction survey.


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