Israel first offshore exploration well was drilled in 1970. Till the late 1990’s some 20 wells were drilled for oil and gas reservoirs, all of them were located in shallow water near the coastline. Following the first discovery of gas (Noa-1) exploration efforts extended to the entire area of the EEZ reaching greater water depth of up to 1700m below MSL. As of 2016 a total of 60 exploration and production wells were drilled in the Levant Basin offshore Israel (See map below and the Index of Oil and Gas Wells in Israel, updated as per 18.11.2017).
Several thousands of 2D, multi-channel seismic reflection lines were acquired in the offshore area of Israel in the early stages of exploration, either in the framework of proprietary seismic shooting in exploration licenses or through regional, multi-client surveys. Following the discoveries of the Noa and Mari-B gas fields more focused, high-quality 3D seismic data were acquired over target areas by license operators. The Israeli offshore seismic data sets include: 42,000 km of 2D seismic lines (shot between 1970 and 2008); and 26 3D seismic surveys covering 32,000 km2 (shot between 2000 and 2013).
The activity in the offshore area include also acquisition of high resolution bathymetric data. This important data type is used for planning of drilling sites, construction of infrastructures, environmental assessments etc. A bathymetric map of the offshore was recently compiled by the Petroleum Unit using Multi-Beam Sonar, well and 2D/3D seismic data (Hall et al, 2015). Efforts to map the sea-floor continue and new MB data is being collected by the newly equipped research vessel of the Israeli Oceanic and Limnologic Institute (IOLR)
Regional gravity and magnetic surveys were acquired offshore Israel in several campaigns. Data were collected either in the framework of multi-clients surveys (Offshore Israel 2001 East Mediterranean Sea Phase 1 2D Gravity and Magnetic Survey Processing Report) or by license owners. The Potential field data provides important information of the deep structure of the Levant Basin.
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