Geophysical methods are the only way to collect information about the geological subsurface on a large scale. Especially 2D and 3D seismics are nowadays the most important methods for the exploration of hydrocarbons. Modern high performance seismographs allow to extract more and more information from the raw data, which contributes to an ever more precise understanding of the structure and geological composition of the subsurface. This reduces the exploration risk and makes the exploitation of complex deposits possible in the first place.
Another, at least equally important field of expertise is borehole geophysics. With the help of various sensors, physical properties of the surrounding rock are measured along the wall of boreholes. From the combined observation of the recorded data, conclusions can be drawn about the type of rock, its mineral composition, tectonic structures, and last but not least about the existing pore fluid - oil, gas or water?