National Archive of Marine Seismic Surveys (NAMSS)
Entry ID: NAMSS
Abstract: ChevronTexaco Corp. donated to the American Geological Institute (AGI) of
thousands of miles of historic 2D and 3D seismic data covering offshore
California and portions of the West Coast of the U.S. In conjunction, AGI has
partnered with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to place the data in a newly
created repository called the "National Archive of Marine Seismic Surveys"
(NAMSS) enabling ... academic, government and industrial researchers, marine
geologists and environmental engineers throughout the world to have easy access
to the data through a website created by the USGS office.
Beginning in the early 1960's ChevronTexaco acquired seismic data to image and
evaluate the geologic potential of the west coast U.S. continental shelf for
oil and gas.
"Over the decades, the magnetic tapes containing the seismic data have been
stored in special warehouses but they are rapidly approaching the point where
they will no longer be viable. The data needs to be transferred to a new
digital recording medium to preserve this unique, irreplaceable asset,
otherwise it will be permanently lost," said Dr. Donald Paul, ChevronTexaco
vice president and chief technology officer.
"The data is a valuable resource for understanding the offshore structural
geology, marine sedimentation and even the mapping of the complex fault systems
associated with earthquakes, particularly in Southern California," said Stephen
Testa, president, American Geological Institute.
This data transfer came about through the cooperative efforts of ChevronTexaco,
the USGS, and AGI. Bill Kempner, a geophysicist for ChevronTexaco in
Bakersfield, California teamed up with Jon Childs, a geophysicist at the USGS,
Menlo Park, California, and Christopher Keane, Director of Technology and
Communications at the American Geological Institute to come up with a plan to
preserve the data and move it into the public domain for future educational and
"The earth science research community is already showing a high level of
interest in gaining access to these offshore images. The plan is to begin the
initial transfer of more than 30,000 tapes immediately. The expectation is that
this data resource will enable years of geological and geophysical research to
expand our knowledge of the continental shelf area," said Dr. Charles Groat,
director, U.S. Geological Survey.
[Summary taken from press release.]
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Smith and Sandwell (1997, Global sea floor topography from satellite altimetry
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Creation and Review Dates