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Introduction to Microseismicity

We use induced microearthquakes to study fracture and joint geometry and their influence on fluid-flow paths. Fracture mapping at Los Alamos started with the Hot Dry Rock geothermal project. In 1990 we began to apply these techniques to oil and gas problems. The figure to the right shows seismic data collected during steady-state production from a shallow, carbonate oil reservoir in Clinton Co. Kentucky. Below is the reservoir's productive fracture geometry delineated from the microearthquake locations detected over a 6-month period.

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Data Acquisition


Cool Graph

Comments or Questions

Please contact Jim Rutledge or Scott Phillips.


Our research has been supported by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Petroleum Technology Office, the Office of Basic Energy Sciences, the Natural Gas and Oil Technology Partnership Program, and the Office of Geothermal Technologies, as well as, the Gas Technology Institute.

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