Geodynamics and Basin Studies

Fault and Depocenter Evolution in a Transtensional and Inverted Basin: Inner Moray Firth Basin

This Master's project was designed for Natalie Blindheim Synnes who started her Master's program in Earth Sciences, UiB, in the fall semester 2023. The Master's project is given by the research group Geodynamics and basin studies.

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Project description
Understanding how rift-related faults evolve has been a focus of research for several decades. This is fundamentally because rift faults do not only control the overall architecture of rift systems but also seismicity related to extensional tectonics, which has critical geohazard implications. Furthermore, rift faults may also influence the routing and distribution of sediments in rift basins, and the geometry and integrity of structural traps with respect to hydrocarbon and geothermal reservoirs, and CO2 storage in the subsurface. Whereas the mode of fault growth within rift basins whose axis are orthogonal to the regional extension direction have been extensively studied, those within rift axis that are oblique to the extension direction or that may have been inverted, have received far less attention. Consequently,
the following remain unclear; (i) how rift-related faults evolve in oblique rift settings, where transtension rather than pure extension dominates, (ii) whether such faults also follow similar displacement accumulation trajectory as faults that form in pure extensional rift settings, and (iii) the extent to which the faults influence the development of associated depocenters.

To address the above knowledge gap, the proposed project will utilize high-resolution 3D seismic reflection and wellbore dataset to constrain the evolution of rift-related faults and associated depocenters in the Inner Moray Firth Basin. The project will involve carrying out an integrated seismic interpretation (both conventional and seismic attributes) and fault kinematic analysis, to constrain (i) the geometry and growth history of intra-basin rift faults, and (ii) the controls of such faults on the distribution and development of depocenters, and overall basin architecture.

Inner Moray Firth Basin

Inner Moray Firth Basin

Edoseghe Edwin Osagiede

Proposed course plan during the master's degree (60 ECTS):

Field- lab- and analysis work:
Subsurface data interpretation based on seismic and well interpretation, and fault kinematic analysis.