3-D reflection seismic imaging of the Hontomin structure in the Basque-Cantabrian Basin (Spain)

J. Alcalde*, D. Marti, C. Juhlin, A. Malehmir, D. Sopher, E. Saura, I. Marzan, P. Ayarza, A. Calahorrano, A. Perez-Estaun, R. Carbonell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
114 Downloads (Pure)


The Basque-Cantabrian Basin of the northern Iberia Peninsula constitutes a unique example of a major deformation system, featuring a dome structure developed by extensional tectonics followed by compressional reactivation. The occurrence of natural resources in the area and the possibility of establishing a geological storage site for carbon dioxide motivated the acquisition of a 3-D seismic reflection survey in 2010, centered on the Jurassic Hontomin dome. The objectives of this survey were to obtain a geological model of the overall structure and to establish a baseline model for a possible geological CO2 storage site. The 36 km(2) survey included approximately 5000 mixed (Vibroseis and explosives) source points recorded with a 25 m inline source and receiver spacing. The target reservoir is a saline aquifer, at approximately 1450 m depth, encased and sealed by carbonate formations. Acquisition and processing parameters were influenced by the rough topography and relatively complex geology. A strong near-surface velocity inversion is evident in the data, affecting the quality of the data. The resulting 3-D image provides constraints on the key features of the geologic model. The Hontom n structure is interpreted to consist of an approximately 10(7) m(2) large elongated dome with two major (W-E and NW-SE) striking faults bounding it. Preliminary capacity estimates indicate that about 1.2 Gt of CO2 can be stored in the target reservoir.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)481-496
Number of pages16
JournalSolid earth
Issue number2
Early online date9 Dec 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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