FMS Image Data Processing


ODP logging contractor: LDEO-BRG

Hole: 856H

Leg: 169

Location: Middle Valley-Juan de Fuca Ridge (NE Pacific Ocean)

Latitude: 48° 26.020' N

Longitude: 128° 40.859' W

Logging date: September, 1996

Bottom felt: 2434.5 mbrf (used for depth shift to sea floor)

Total penetration: 500 mbsf

Total core recovered: 49.1m (12.1%)


FMS Pass 1, Upper Section: 114-225 mbsf

FMS Pass 1, Middle Section: 242-279 mbsf

FMS Pass 1, Upper Section: 287-490 mbsf

FMS Pass 2, Upper Section: 114-210 mbsf

FMS Pass 2, Lower Section: 193-385 mbsf

Magnetic declination: 20.4914°

The basic principle of the FMS (Formation MicroScanner) is to map the conductivity of the borehole wall with a dense array of sensors. This provides a high resolution electrical image of the formation which can be displayed in either gray or color scale. The purpose of this report is to describe the images from Leg 169 and the different steps used to generate them from the raw FMS measurements.


The FMS tool records 4 perpendicular electrical images, using four pads, which are pressed against the borehole wall. Each pad has 16 buttons and the tool provides approximately 25% coverage of the borehole wall. The tool string also contains a triaxial accelerometer and three flux-gate magnetometers (in the GPIT, General Purpose Inclinometry Tool) whose results are used to accurately orient and position the images. Measurements of hole size, cable speed, and natural gamma ray intensity also contribute to the processing.


The FMS images in Hole 856H are generally of good quality. The first pass recorded reliable data at the bottom of the hole, while the second pass provided better quality images for the upper half of the logged interval. The FMS images characterize the complex lithology, structure, and alteration of Hole 856H.


The interval from 115 to 252 mbsf is characterized by a broad scale alternation of resistive and conductive layers. The resistive intervals (177-200, 212-225, and 239-252 mbsf) contain some regularly-spaced conductive features, whereas in the conductive intervals, the density of conductive features is higher.  In this particular case, conductivity could be a good indicator of intensity of both alteration and fracturing. The conductive traces in the conductive intervals exhibit very complicated structure without any preferential orientation.


The 252-355 mbsf interval consists of common resistive layers, for instance at 259, 265, 271-273, and 290 mbsf. Above 270 mbsf, the more conductive images show a mottled structure (cluster of mm-scale spots with a high conductivity).


The 355-390 mbsf interval is characterized by rather uniform FMS images and shows rare meter-thick resistive levels. The structure is marked by low angle planes dipping to the S and by moderate angle planes dipping to the E (e. g., resistive thin levels at 376 mbsf). The overall conductivity of the sediments increases upward with thresholds at 355, and 325 mbsf. Vertical structures exhibiting large aperture are identified at about 350 mbsf.

From 390 to 433.5 mbsf, the FMS images show an increase of conductivity explained by a high density of thin (cm-scale) conductive laminations. At a larger scale, the FMS images exhibit a less contrasted rhythmic alternation of 2-3 m thick resistive beds in a conductive matrix.


From 433.5 to 490 mbsf the FMS images exhibit a clear alternation of resistive layers within a more conductive matrix. Due to the high resistivity rate of basalts compared to sediments, these levels can be interpreted as basaltic intrusions within conductive sediments. These sills occur at 433-438.5, 449-450, 457-459, 466.5-471, and 482-485 mbsf. A saw-tooth pattern represented by vertical conductive traces is observed within these structures, for example at 449.5 and 458 mbsf. The sediments are marked by the occurrence of highly conductive bands at 442-444, 459-465, 480-481, 488-489 mbsf, which might correspond to the most altered and fractured zones. At the same depths, thin conductive traces show low to moderate angles dips to the SW with a few steeper events dipping to the W.


Image Processing


Processing is required to convert the electrical current in the formation, emitted by the FMS button electrodes, into a gray or color-scale image representative of the conductivity changes. This is achieved through two main processing phases: data restoration and image display.


1) Data Restoration


Speed Correction. The data from the z-axis accelerometer is used to correct the vertical position of the data for variations in the speed of the tool (GPIT speed correction), including stick and slip. In addition, image-based speed correction is also applied to the data: the principle behind this is that if the GPIT speed correction is successful, the readings from the two rows of buttons on the pads will line up, and if not, they will be offset from each other (a zigzag effect on the image).


Equalization: Equalization is the process whereby the average response of all the buttons of the tool are rendered approximately the same over large intervals, to correct for various tool and borehole effects which affect individual buttons differently. These effects include differences in the gain and offset of the pre-amplification circuits associated with each button, and differences in contact with the borehole wall between buttons on a pad, and between pads.


Button Correction. If the measurements from a button are unreasonably different from its neighbors (e.g. dead buttons) over a particular interval, they are declared faulty, and the defective trace is replaced by traces from adjacent good buttons.


EMEX voltage correction. The button response (current) is controlled by the EMEX voltage, which is applied between the button electrode and the return electrode. The EMEX voltage is regulated to keep the current response within the operating range. The button response is divided by the EMEX voltage so that the response corresponds more closely to the conductivity of the formation.


Depth-shifting: Each of the logging runs are depth-matched to a common scale by means of lining up distinctive features of the natural gamma log from each of the tool strings. If the reference logging run is not the FMS tool string, the specified depth shifts are applied to the FMS images. The position of data located between picks is computed by linear interpolation.


2) Image Display:

In "static normalization", a histogram equalization technique is used to obtain the maximum quality image. In this technique, the resistivity range of the entire interval of good data is computed and partitioned into 256 color levels. This type of normalization is best suited for large-scale resistivity variations.


The image can be enhanced when it is desirable to highlight features in sections of the well where resistivity events are relatively subdued when compared with the overall resistivity range in the section. This enhancement is called "dynamic normalization". By rescaling the color intensity over a smaller interval, the contrast between adjacent resistivity levels is enhanced. It is important to note that with dynamic normalization, resistivities in two distant sections of the hole cannot be directly compared with each other. A 2-m normalization interval is used.


Oriented Presentation: The image is displayed as an unwrapped borehole cylinder (its circumference is derived from the bit size). Several passes can be oriented and merged together on the same presentation to give additional borehole coverage if the tool pads followed a different track. A dipping plane in the borehole will be displayed as a sinusoid on the image; the amplitude of this sinusoid is proportional to the dip of the plane. The images are oriented with respect to north; hence the strike of dipping features can also be determined.


For further information or questions about the processing, please contact:


Cristina Broglia
Phone: 845-365-8343
Fax: 845-365-3182
E-mail: Cristina Broglia