Vanoil Energy Ltd. has embarked on the phase I, 249 feet (400 line-kilometers), 2D marine high resolution low penetration seismic survey in East Kivu Graben in Rwanda. The survey forms part of Vanoil's 2012 work program which will be included in the upcoming Production Sharing Contract negotiations with the Ministry of Natural Resources of Rwanda. The seismic data after processing and interpretation will enhance the data on revealing the hydrocarbon prospectivity of the Vanoil's East Kivu Graben Block.
The survey is being undertaken by the Syracuse University, as part of their long-running scientific investigations of Africa's Great Rift Valley. The Syracuse University technical team is headed by Dr. Christopher Scholz, SU faculty member and research geoscientist. The team has conducted marine seismic surveys elsewhere in East African rift system basins including rift basins of lakes Turkana, Malawi, Albert, Edward and Tanganyika. The current survey extends across 630 square miles (1,631 square kilometer) area of Vanoil's exclusive license in the East Kivu Graben Block.
The northern most part of the Western Branch of East Africa Rift System (CARS) is the Albertine Graben in Uganda in the Lake Albert area which has an estimated oil reserve in place of approximately 2 billion barrels. This major oil discovery was found by Heritage and Tullow oil companies. The similar origin (tectonic and stratigraphy) of Kivu Graben with Albertine Graben presupposes a similar sedimentary basin in-fill and therefore makes East Kivu Graben Block an interesting area to explore for hydrocarbons. Its prospectivity is further enhanced by presence of Long chain hydrocarbons in the lake bottom sediments, indicative of possible existence of an active petroleum system.
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