OGA Data Release
The Oil & Gas Authority has released almost 40,000 line kilometres of new and legacy seismic data acquired during last year’s successful £20 million Government-funded seismic survey of the Rockall Basin and Mid-North Sea High (MSNH) area.
The data package includes processed seismic data from the 2015 surveys as well as legacy data, Gravity and Magnetic maps and Well data. It has been published via the Common Data Access UKOilandGasData portal www.ukoilandgasdata.com. Data packages under 20GB in size may be downloaded for free, while larger data packages will be available on media only, for which a charge will be made to cover media, handling, and delivery costs.
The data release was welcomed by Deirdre Michie, Oil & Gas UK’s chief executive. She said: “We welcome the news that the Oil and Gas Authority is now releasing into the public domain the substantial volume of seismic data from the UK government-funded surveys. This marks a milestone in the collective efforts to re-energise exploration activity on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS). The OGA is publishing the data via the UKOilandGasData.com portal, the industry’s shared data management service operated by Common Data Access (CDA), a subsidiary of Oil & Gas UK.
“There is a comprehensive array of information available, including both newly acquired and legacy seismic data plus gravity and magnetic maps and well data. It represents a new dimension in both the quantity and quality of subsurface data available in these frontier areas, which should help stimulate further interest in the forthcoming 29th Licence Round. Record numbers of organisations both in the UKCS and overseas have already registered an interest in downloading the data and it is a testament to the focus and hard work of many individuals that the project has been delivered so effectively.
“The industry recognises the government’s commitment to stimulating exploration in the UKCS, where we believe billions of barrels of oil and gas are yet to be recovered. The government is making an additional £20 million available to fund new seismic data acquisition this year for release in 2017 and this is also very much to be welcomed. The industry is working with the OGA to help identify the priority areas where the new data should be acquired. The results from these surveys will again be made available to the wider industry and academia.”
WesternGeco, a Schlumberger company, was awarded the seismic contract in July 2015 and all three seismic vessels – Vespucci, Tasman and Regent – were in the field later that month. The latest seismic acquisition and processing technologies were used to enhance subsurface imaging and help improve understanding of the geology and potential prospectivity.
The OGA is currently preparing for the 29th Licensing Round which, subject to the necessary regulatory approvals, will be announced later in 2016 focusing on under explored Frontier areas using the data from the seismic campaign. In January 2016, the Prime Minister announced a further £20 million seismic survey campaign. OGA has begun consulting with industry on areas to be covered with initial interest being shown in the East Irish Sea Basin, South Celtic Sea, South West Approaches Basin and Orcadian Basin. The focus on under-explored frontier areas allows modern exploration techniques and ideas to be applied to regions that have received minimal attention for decades.