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Before you can extract oil, you have to know where to look for it.
3-D Seismic Surveys
Shell geoscientists pioneered the use of 3-D Seismic Surveys to create pictures of what’s happening underground, both on land and at sea. They start by sending sound waves below ground to measure how quickly and strongly the waves bounce back. These sound waves give geoscientists information by reflecting off various layers in the subsurface. This helps to determine what kind of matter – such as soil, rock, or oil– lies below. They use this information to create 3-D models of the Earth’s interior.
Geoscientists use Satellite Imagery to check geologic features such as fault lines or anticlines. These formations give clues about where oil might be hiding beneath the Earth’s surface.
Global Positioning System (GPS)
Geoscientists use GPS in the field in a number of ways. A Global Positioning System (GPS) is a tool that uses signals from satellites orbiting the Earth to pinpoint exactly where its user is located. Geoscientists look for source rocks such as sandstones and limestone. These are areas that have a higher likelihood of containing oil and gas. Once the source rock is identified, the geoscientist can use the GPS as a mapping tool to pinpoint the potential area for further exploration.
To learn more about these tools, click on these links: