Offshore SeisNews ©

••• 03.08.08  PGS has been awarded a contract for a series of seismic surveys to be conducted in the summer of 2009 for StatoilHydro.
Four of the Company's seismic vessels will be involved in the surveys, giving a total contract value of around USD 100 million. StatoilHydro will be the first customer for the Ramform Sterling, PGS' second new S-Class Ramform vessel, on schedule for delivery in July 2009. This vessel will operate with both steerable streamers and steerable sources in order to produce the highest possible repeatability for 4D surveys. A second high capacity Ramform vessel will be deployed for further HD4D work.
A part of the campaign includes the use of a new PGS invention, the GeoStreamer®. This revolutionary new streamer system will be used in 3D mode and offers the customer enhanced resolution and deeper penetration resulting a higher quality, deghosted image. The system has the added advantage of being towed deeper than conventional streamers, offering extended operating windows in areas of variable weather such as in Northern Europe.
President & CEO of PGS Jon Erik Reinhardsen, states in a comment: "This contract is another confirmation that oil companies are continuing to secure capacity early in a buoyant seismic market. StatoilHydro has a rich tradition as an early adopter of new exploration technologies. This year they were the first user of the most modern vessel Ramform Sovereign. Now they are following this innovative trend by securing Ramform Sterling on its "maiden voyage".
Mr. Reinhardsen continues: "We are also delighted that they have decided to use GeoStreamer® as part of next year's campaign. The high resolution and deep imaging capabilities of the system can offer a very real competitive advantage both in the search for new reserves, and in the enhanced production of existing reservoirs."
Source: PGS

••• 03.08.08  StatoilHydro awards Geowave Master a full North Sea season for 2009.
Wavefield Inseis ASA announced that they have received a Letter of Intent from StatoilHydro to award a full season of work in the North Sea next year to the Geowave Master.
The work will include a number of projects offshore Norway that will require up to 10 streamers. This will be the fourth season in a row that Wavefield Inseis will have worked for StatoilHydro in the North Sea.
Commenting on the award Wavefield Inseis CEO Atle Jacobsen said: "StatoilHydro awarded us our first ever 3D in 2006 and we very much appreciate their continued business. 2009 will be the fourth year in succession, and the Geowave Master will be the 3rd vessel of ours that will have worked for them. We look forward to this new opportunity to deliver an excellent service and many more years of cooperation."
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 03.08.08  SCAN Geophysical: Update on M/V SCAN Stigandi.
M/V SCAN Stigandi has successfully commenced its first seismic survey without any operational problems. The contract consists of approximately 4,000 km in the Caribbean region.
This modern seismic vessel is equipped to handle four streamers for 3D applications and longoffset, large source configurations for 2D surveys worldwide.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 31.07.08  New contract for Fugro in Brazil.
Fugro Brasil with vessel owners Sealion Shipping have been awarded a three year contract by oil company Petrobras for inspection, repair and maintenance work in Santos and Campos Basins, north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Start of the project is expected to be in September 2008. The contract value is approximately USD 137 million for the three years.
Fugro will operate the diving support vessel Toisa Sentinel with an eighteen man 350 metres saturation dive system and two ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles), one for water depths up to 3,000 metres and one for waters depths up to 1,500 metres.
Fugro has operated with Sealion Shipping onboard the Toisa Sentinel for many years and has performed many dives in water depths up to 350 metres without incident in that time. The ROVs are used to monitor divers and to carry out inspection, repair and maintenance works in waters up to 3,000 metres.
With other recent awards and ongoing contracts, Fugro operates now fourteen ROV’s in Brazil.
Four additional new ROVs are scheduled for delivery to Brazil later this year.
Source: Fugro

••• 29.07.08  GC Rieber, StatoilHydro form new company.
GC Rieber Shipping ASA has entered into an agreement with StatoilHydro Venture AS and Reservoir Innovation AS to establish the holding company Hexio AS (Hexio), which has a business idea of offering technology and services related to permanent monitoring (4C/4D) of oil and gas fields in operation through the subsidiary Octio Geophysical AS (Octio). GC Rieber Shipping will also transfer the 2D/source vessel Geo Explorer to the new company.
GC Rieber Shipping will invest NOK 120 million in equity and will have a 60% shareholding in Hexio, while StatoilHydro Venture and Reservoir Innovation each will own 20%. Hexio will own 74% of Octio, while the remaining 26% will be held by ION Geophysical Corporation.
Source: Scandoil

••• 25.07.08  SCAN starts Portuguese seismic.
SCAN Geophysical ASA has successfully begun the acquisition of more than 8,500 kilometres (5,281 miles) of 2-D data offshore Portugal for Petrobras International Braspetro B. V. - Portugal Branch, on behalf of a consortium formed with Galp and Partex.
SCAN's 2-D seismic vessel M/V Geo Searcher is acquiring the program, which began on schedule.
The vessel is utilizing a 10,000 meter (32,808 ft) long MSX solid (gel-filled) streamer system and a 4,200 cubic inch source array designed for low frequency output.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 25.07.08  Tubby oil workers.
Helicopter companies that transport North Sea workers to platforms are noticing a significant weight increase among the workers, and now have to fly with empty seats.
Measurings that the company CHC Helikopterservice has performed show that the average weight for both men and women has increased with several kilograms, Nettavisen reports. The weight increase is from 68 to 73 kilos for women and from 86 to 90 for the gentlemen. These measurements resulted in Helikopterservice contacting the Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority for a change of regulations.
The standard weight that was previously used turned out to be too low, and to stick to regulations for helicopter flight permission, the weight must be increased.
Most of the helicopter force of Helikopterservice carries near to 19 passengers. The weight increase among the oil workers means that the helicopters might have carried up to 95 kilos heavier load than permitted.
- In cooperation with the Civil Aviation Authority we have adjusted the numbers in coherence with the average weight, says chief of ground operations in CHC Helikopterservice, Ulf Selset. The change of regulations took effect from 16. June.
Practically, this means that seats have to be left empty on some flights.
Source: Oilinfo

••• 25.07.08  Death toll sparks shipyard safety probe in Singapore.
A toll of eight deaths and 18 injuries in less than two months has sparked an investigation into the safety of 89 Singapore shipyards.
Singapore's Ministry of Manpower launched the probe after two workers were killed yesterday afternoon aboard Liberia-registered liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) tanker, Formosagas 3, anchored at Singapore's Western Anchorage.
The foreign workers, a 35-year-old Malaysian and a 25-year-old Indian hired by a subcontractor of ST Marine, died after falling into a three metre (9.8 feet) deep tank while working on the vessel.
Formosagas 3 was awaiting its next assignment, having undergone repair works at ST Marine's shipyard in Tuas. The cause of the accident is still being investigated.
Halimah Yacob, a member of the Government Parliamentary Committee for Manpower, said the spike in casualties was a 'cause for alarm'.
"I think what's happening is that although the precautions and inspections have been stepped up, there's a need to look at how this can be improved in making sure every worker down the line understands safety.
"It's not really sunk in. Accidents don't just happen. They are created due to human error, negligence or oversight."
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 24.07.08  Petrovietnam Surveying Oil Block Eyed by China.
State oil group Petrovietnam has resumed exploration activity in an area off Vietnam's coast which is the subject of a territorial dispute between Hanoi and China, Petrovietnam's partner, oil major BP Plc stated.
"Petrovietnam is currently executing contracts for offshore survey activities on blocks 5.2 and 5.3," BP spokesman David Nicholas said.
Last year, BP suspended planned seismic surveys of Block 5.2 pending a resolution of the dispute.
The block is about 370 km (230 mi) offshore, between Vietnam and the Spratly Islands, a string of rocky outcrops in the South China Sea, suspected of containing large oil and gas deposits and which are claimed by Vietnam, China and Taiwan.
Source: Rigzone/AFX News Limited

••• 23.07.08  Lundin's Morskaya-1 well flows at 2500 bopd on test.
Lundin Petroleum AB says that the Morskaya-1 exploration well in the Lagansky block, situated in the northern Caspian Sea was successfully tested at a combined flow rate of 2500 barrels of oil per day of 32 API oil.
Two drill stem tests were conducted using the Marine Drilling Complex. The Neocomian formation was perforated over a 7 meter interval and tested at a stabilised rate of 1700 barrels of oil per day at a 56/64 inch choke. The Aptian formation was perforated over 21 meter interval and tested at a stabilised rate of 800 barrels of oil per day at a 36/64 inch choke. Due to time constraints associated with the North Caspian Drilling season, the shallower gas bearing Albian reservoir will be tested in future appraisal wells. The flow rates were severely constrained by facilities and larger rates will be possible during development.
The Morskaya discovery, within the Lagansky block is on trend with several major oil and gas discoveries made by Lukoil in the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea. The block contains significant additional prospectivity on trend.
The Morskaya–1 well was drilled using the Marine Drilling Complex (MDC). Following testing the MDC will be transported to the Laganskaya-1 well location which is expected to commence drilling at the end of September. Lundin Petroleum plans to drill another two wells in 2009. Petrovskaya-1 will be targeting a large anticline to the north-west and on trend with the Morskaya discovery and the second well will most likely be an appraisal well of the Morskaya discovery.
Lundin Petroleum currently has a 70 percent interest in the Lagansky block. Gazprom has a call option to acquire a 50 percent plus one share in the Lagansky block. Lundin Petroleum has a call option to acquire an additional 30 percent from minority shareholders. If both options are exercised Lundin Petroleum will retain 50 percent minus one share in the Lagansky block and Gazprom will hold a 50 percent plus one share in the Lagansky block.
Ashley Heppenstall, President and CEO of Lundin Petroleum comments; "The testing of the Morskaya-1 well has confirmed that this is a world class oil discovery. We will provide preliminary estimates of likely recoverable reserves from the Morskaya discovery after we have analysed the results of the drilling and testing programme. The Russian sector of the Northern Caspian will over forthcoming years become a major production area. Lundin Petroleum has a material position in the Lagansky block and with this discovery coupled with significant further exploration potential is well positioned to take advantage of the development of this area".
Source: Scandoil

••• 22.07.08  ODIM has secured a new seismic contract in China.
Norwegian group ODIM has secured a new contract from BGP CNPC in China, covering the delivery of an automated handling system for a 12-streamer seismic vessel. The order is worth NOK 80 million, with delivery scheduled before the end of 2009.
This is the second contract ODIM has been awarded by the Chinese company, which already operates the BGP Pioneer with handling equipment from the Norwegian group.
"We have secured seismic-related contracts worth NOK 170 million from the Chinese market over the past half-year," noted Idar Hatloy, Vice President for the seismic sector at ODIM. "That helps to confirm our position in a market we regard as very interesting for the future."
Source: ODIM

••• 21.07.08  Schlumberger announces second quarter results.
Schlumberger reported second quarter revenue of US$6.75 billion, compared to US$6.29 billion in the first quarter of 2008 and US$5.64 billion in the second quarter of 2007. Income from continuing operations was US$1.42 billion, a 13 percent increase over the second quarter of 2007.
Oilfield Services revenue increased 22 percent to US$6.07 billion in the second quarter. The company's seismic subsidiary WesternGeco brought in revenue of US$671 million, a one percent increase from the second quarter of 2007.
The company reported strong growth in most areas including Mexico and the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, but this was offset by slow performance in the Canadian market. Schlumberger is now anticipating a successful second half of the year, due to high commodity prices and the completion of newbuild offshore rigs.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 18.07.08  Norway's production goes up in May.
The average daily production on the Norwegian Continental Shelf in May was about 2.177 million barrels of oil, about 304,000 barrels of natural gas liquids (NGL) and about 70,000 barrels of condensate, a total of 2.55 million barrels of liquid.
Despite Snohvit being closed for three weeks of the month, according to plan, the total figure is up from a year earlier. So far this year the average daily production has been just above 2.1 million barrels of oil. Preliminary production figures for June show an average daily production of about 1.93 million barrels of oil and 272,000 barrels of NGL and condensate.
Several fields have been partly closed due to planned maintenance in June, for which the final figures will be available at the beginning of August.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 17.07.08  Russian gas giant Gazprom will increase its 2008 spending by 111.53 billion (USD 4.83 bn).
Total spending this year are now up to RUB 821.66 bn (USD 35,65 bn), the company reports.
At the same time, the capital investments will account for RUB 531.2 bn (RUB 51.78 bn up compared to the investment program approved in December 2007), while long-term financial investments now are up to a total of RUB 290.46 bn, an increase of RUB 59.75 bn from the December 2007 estimates.
According to the draft budget, the overall cash income & revenues will equal RUB 3.236 trillion (USD 141,41 bn), RUB 311 bn up from the December 2007 figures.
Total amount of cash liabilities, expenditures and investments will increase by RUB 366 bln and come to RUB 3.38 trillion, while financial borrowings will remain unchanged at RUB 90 bln. The net surplus will total RUB 1.7 bn, Gazprom said.
A number of new projects in Eastern Siberia and the Far East, including the pilot commissioning of the Chikanskoye gas and condensate field, gas delivery to the Kamchatka Peninsula and Vladivostok; boosting of the Bovanenkovskoye field development and the new Obskaya-Bovanenkovo railroad construction, are named as reasons behind the upgraded spending budget.
In addition are share acquisition in some energy companies, investments into the Shtokman field development and the Nord Stream gas pipeline construction projects, Gazprom's participation in the Sakhalin II project and the acquisition of the license for the Chayandinskoye field development, listed as areas contributing to the increased spending levels.
Source: Oilinfo

••• 16.07.08  Polarcus registers on the Norwegian OTC.
Seismic company Polarcus Limited has announced that the company's shares are registered on the Norwegian OTC list and are noew traded under the symbol PLCS.
The OTC registration has been established to provide a marketplace for the Polarcus shares and thereby facilitate trading in the shares.
Polarcus Limited will use the notification system of NOTC to distribute relevant information from the 8 July 2008 in addition to Polarcus' homepage (
The NOTC List is administered by the Norwegian Securities Dealers Association (
Source: Polarcus

••• 16.07.08  A new seismic survey technology company has revealed plans for a listing on London’s Alternative Investment Market.
Thalassa Energy will be offering life of field and 4D time-lapse seismic data services through a sole subsidiary Thalassa Energy Services Ltd which is due to provide a portable modular source system to provide the seismic source signal for field exploration.
Thalassa intends to float with an initial market capitalisation of GBP4.26 m (US $8.5 m) including GBP3.10 m ($6.2 m) raised through the issue of 6.2 million new shares.
Company chairman Duncan Soukup said: "The Admission to AIM will allow Thalassa to access capital and help to broaden the company’s investor base and enhance its profile in the oil services industry."
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 15.07.08  ConocoPhillips and Tullow Oil are shortlisted for nine offshore gas blocks in Bangladesh.
ConocoPhillips qualified for eight offshore blocks and Tullow for two blocks in the Bay of Bengal.
Dhaka released 28 offshore blocks during the 2008 offshore bidding round. Explorers are expected to acquire new 2-D seismic in all 28 blocks and to drill at least one subsea well in the seven Type A blocks released during the bidding round.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 14.07.08  SCAN Geophysical: Update on M/V SCAN Stigandi.
On 23 June SCAN Geophysical ASA reported that the multi-purpose seismic survey vessel M/V SCAN Stigandi experienced engine failure during transit to its first survey area. Repair of the main engine and subsequent sea trials have now been completed, and the vessel is now transiting to the Caribbean area to commence the earlier announced proprietary contract work.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 14.07.08  Qatargas and Nakilat Name World’s Biggest LNG Vessel.
The world’s largest LNG vessel has been named in front of a huge crowd of dignitaries at Samsung Heavy Industry’s (SHI) massive shipyard on Geoje Island, South Korea.
Ordered and to be operated by the Qatar Gas Transport Company (Nakilat), M/V Mozah, the first "Q-Max"-sized vessel with a capacity for 266,000 cubic-metres of LNG, will carry almost 80 per cent more cargo than conventional ships.
These new models are expected to spearhead long haul gas shipping to the United States and Europe as the industrialised world continues its search for cleaner energy products.
Source: Scandoil

••• 14.07.08  Snohvit restarts after maintenance.
Production from the Snohvit field in the Barents Sea has resumed after extensive service work including the replacement of heat exchangers at the Hammerfest LNG plant.
The problems with the refrigeration unit have been the main area of focus during the turnaround. After start-up last autumn, several of the seawater heat exchangers in the cooling circuits were shown to be insufficiently robust to withstand the force of full production.
"The difficulties are associated with parts of the refrigeration unit and they have nothing to do with the climatic conditions in Hammerfest," emphasises A.Michelsen, senior vice president for the operations north cluster in Exploration & Production Norway.
The damaged heat exchangers were repaired during the turnaround and some modifications have been made to pipes. In addition, several extra metering instruments have been installed. These will be used to gain a more detailed picture of what happens inside the refrigeration unit during production.
"The data material will help us when we decide this autumn what we need to do to get the plant in full production," says Mr Hopland. "We are very pleased to have started production again," note Morten Svenning and Sivert Vist, start-up managers at the Hammerfest LNG plant.
After a record-quick start-up lasting less than nine hours and involving little flaring, the plant began producing liquefied natural gas on Thursday at about 60% of its design capacity.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 10.07.08  Work underway on first Shtokman semisubmersible.
Vyborg Shipyard JSC has carried out the keel laying of the first semisubmersible floating drilling rig (SSFDR) to be used in the Barents Sea's Shtokman field.
SSFDR is under construction for Gazprom subsidiary Gazflot and will be a self-propelled floating rig of catamaran type with two pontoons and six stabilizing columns supporting the upper hull and topside structures.
It will be fitted with all necessary equipment for effective and safe operation in the harsh weather conditions of the Barents Sea and with accommodation for a crew of 128.
The first unit is due for completion in the fourth quarter of 2010, and the second by the first quarter of 2011.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 10.07.08  Claim against Arrow Seismic ASA from CGGVeritas.
PGS announced that its subsidiary Arrow Seismic ASA has received a writ of summons to Asker og Barum Tingrett from CGGVeritas where CGGVeritas claims compensation from Arrow of approximately USD 70 million.
In the writ CGGVeritas claims to have a binding agreement with Arrow for a charter and ultimately the purchase of NB 534, a newbuild seismic vessel that Arrow`s subsidiary Arrow Seismic V Limited is building in Spain. CGGVeritas claims to have a binding agreement to this effect even though no agreement has been signed between CGGVeritas and Arrow or any subsidiary of Arrow.
CGGVeritas claims that Arrow discontinued the negotiations with CGGVeritas as a consequence of PGS' purchase of Arrow at a stage where, considering the nature of the negotiations, a binding agreement had in fact been entered into.
PGS views the CGGVeritas claim against Arrow as totally unfounded. PGS' position is that neither Arrow nor any subsidiary of Arrow was bound by any agreement with CGGVeritas at the time PGS purchased Arrow.
The availability of NB 534 was a clearly communicated and accepted condition of PGS' bid for GC Rieber Shipping ASA shares in Arrow. PGS has put Rieber on notice of the situation and reserves any rights towards Rieber.
Source: PGS

••• 10.07.08  Spectrum signs up for Far East seismic.
Spectrum ASA has signed a long term contract with an unnamed seismic service company for a 12 month charter of the seismic vessel GGS Atlantic.
The vessel will acquire long offset 2D seismic data mainly in the Far East. An option is included for a further 12 month charter period. Annualised contract revenue should be in the range of US$20-23 million depending on acquisition productivity rates and vessel utilization.
The contract allows for the vessel to complete an outstanding contractual obligation to finalise the Reliance contract, a GGS ASA obligation, off the east coast of India.
Spectrum will increase the source array capacity of the GGS Atlantic to 6,000cu inches to satisfy client requirements, an investment of approximately US$1 million.
The GGS Atlantic will commence work on the charter when the current project for KNOC offshore Yemen is completed. The mobilisation from Yemen is anticipated in the last part of August.
Spectrum recently has demerged from Norwegian parent company GGS ASA to specialise in the provision of seismic services for the oil exploration industry.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 09.07.08  BOS long term agreement in West Africa.
Norwegian company Bergen Oilfield Services (BOS) signed a contract with Hyperdynamics on 3 July, a significant win as BOS's largest contract to date and its first contract in Africa.
The 3D Program compromises up to 5,000 square kilometres of 3D acquisition and processing and is to commence in the fourth quarter 2008, offshore in The Republic of Guinea, West Africa.
BOS will use one of its high end 3D vessels utilising the latest available acquisition and processing technology.
In a press release made by Hyperdynamics on 7 July, Kent Watts, Chief Executive, commented "BOS has the extensive experience and resources necessary to timely provide our mission critical seismic services with an appropriately high level of quality control. I look for them to work closely with us for years to come."
BOS CEO, Karstein Rod, Chief Executive Officer of BOS was also quoted as stating, "We see a need for comprehensive seismic services (in West Africa) and this is a great match for our value chain approach. We are happy to now be part of the efforts to help explore offshore Guinea."
Source: BOS

••• 07.07.08  SeaBird - Vessel utilization Q2 2008.
SeaBird announced the vessel utilization for the second quarter of 2008. For this purpose vessel utilization is defined as the percentage of the full quarter where the vessel is in paid work either in the form of acquisition, mobilization, demobilization, steaming, standby or other.
All eight vessels were in operation in the quarter with an average vessel utilization of around 86% for the full quarter which is down from 92 % for the first quarter of 2008. Even though we did not have optimal vessel utilization we expect to recognize revenues in the range of USD 54-55 million for the second quarter of 2008 compared to USD 37.7 million in the first quarter of 2008. Four of the vessels (Aquila Explorer, Harrier Explorer, Kondor Explorer and Hawk Explorer) were on time charter contracts for the whole quarter.
Harrier Explorer had close to 94% utilization and chargeable time, while the three others had average vessel utilization slightly above 80%. The main part of the unpaid time for these vessels was planned upgrade and maintenance work. Hawk Explorer was out of production for eight days for improvements to the seismic equipment with the aim of bringing the vessel performance back to target levels. Aquila Explorer was in yard for around three weeks for various maintenance work and upgrade to 2D mode, of which around two weeks were unpaid. The main capital expenditures related to the upgrade to 2D mode are covered by the charterer, while the charter rate will be increased around 10% to operate the vessel in 2D mode. Kondor Explorer was in yard close to three weeks for various maintenance works.
Munin Explorer, Northern Explorer, Osprey Explorer were all operating in India in April and May on various contracts for Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited of India (“ONGC”). Munin Explorer left India for a proprietary survey in East-Africa early June, while Northern Explorer left India mid-June for a 3-4 months time charter in the Far East. Osprey Explorer continues to acquire data at the East-Coast of India and is expected to stay in India throughout the monsoon period. These three vessels had average vessel utilization of around 85%. All three vessels suffered downtime and non-chargeable standby in excess of our targets, however this was more than offset by effective production when the vessels were acquiring data, hence revenues were exceeding target.
Geo Mariner had vessel utilization above 95% and had a satisfactory quarter completing a survey at the East Coast of India and a survey at the East Coast of Africa. The vessel is currently mobilizing for a survey in the Middle East.
SeaBird has over the last few weeks been awarded jobs for Geo Mariner, Northern Explorer, Munin Explorer securing close to full contract backlog through Q3 2008 for the 8 vessels currently in operation.
The total value of these contracts is in the range of USD 30 million and is expected to yield average day-rates slightly above the previous guiding of USD 75-90,000 per day.
The Hugin Explorer is in the process of completing successful maritime and seismic sea-trials and is expected to do a small job in the North Sea in July prior to mobilizing to Angola to commence operations for Total in the second half of the quarter. Expected total investment in nodes and vessel conversion and equipment is estimated to be around USD 75 million.
As described in our first quarter 2008 financial statement, SeaBird has been in the process of amending installment plans for loans with scheduled repayments in 2008 and has successfully re-negotiated repayment schedules for short and long term loans constituting around USD 75 million to better align the repayment schedule with our projected cash flow from operations and securing a satisfactory liquidity.
Source: SeaBird

••• 07.07.08  PGS seismic fleet sees less time.
Petroleum Geo-Services' 3-D seismic vessel fleet used approximately 84 percent of its total time to acquire marine contract and multi-client seismic in the second quarter of this year. This compares to 91 percent in the first quarter of 2008 and 88 percent in the second quarter of 2007.
A PGS spokesman said, "Higher steaming in the second quarter is caused by record number of vessels moving to the North Sea and two vessels moving from India to East Asia."
The vessel statistics for the second quarter 2008 includes Ramform Sovereign. The vessel is not included in the statistics for earlier periods and its statistics further exclude Ramform Victory from mid-October 2007.
Ramform Victory was delivered to the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) Jan. 31, 2008 and the revenues under the service agreement, which will be reported as contract revenues, took full effect from the date of delivery.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 07.07.08  Barents Sea Gas Discovery
StatoilHydro has confirmed the existence of gas in the Ververis prospect in the Barents Sea, whereas an exploration well in the Stetind prospect in the Norwegian Sea turned out to be dry.
During the drilling of exploration well 7226/2-1 in the Barents Sea StatoilHydro, the operator of the licence, has struck gas in a prospect named Ververis. The drilling in 347 metres of water was performed by the Polar Pioneer drilling rig.
This is the 13th discovery on the Norwegian continental shelf that StatoilHydro is involved in this year.
The main purpose of the well was to confirm the existence of hydrocarbons in early Jurassic to mid-Jurassic sandstones. The well confirmed the existence of gas in mid-Jurassic sandstones. No gas/water contact was established. Nor has any formation leak-off test been conducted, but extensive data acquisition and sampling have taken place.
"It is of course promising that we have discovered gas, but the drilling was performed in a relatively complex formation. We therefore need to perform more analyses and evaluations in order to determine the resource potential of the discovery," says Bente Fotland at StatoilHydro’s Harstad office.
Ververis is the first well in production licence 395, which was awarded in the 19th licensing round in 2006.
"The licence was awarded in April 2006, and seismic data were shot during the summer of 2006. The entire project was in fact completed sooner than expected," Fotland says.
The well was drilled to a vertical depth of 2992 metres below the sea surface and completed in the lower Triassic Havert formation. The well will now be permanently plugged and abandoned. Polar Pioneer will move on to drill exploration well 7224/6-1 in production licence 394, operated by StatoilHydro.
The licensees in production licence 395 are: StatoilHydro ASA (operator) (50 prosent), BG Norge AS (30 prosent), Petoro AS (20 prosent).
The drilling of exploration well 6605/8-2 in a structure named Stetind in the Norwegian Sea is being completed without any recoverable hydrocarbons being confirmed.
The well was drilled by the Transocean Leader drilling rig. After completing this well the rig will move on to production licence 218 in the Norwegian Sea for the drilling of exploration well 6706/12-1, operated by StatoilHydro.
The licensees in production licence 283 are: StatoilHydro (operator, 30 percent), Centrica (10 percent), Chevron (12.5 percent), Aker Exploration AS (12.5 percent), ConocoPhillips (15 percent) and Petoro (20 percent).
Source: Scandoil

••• 04.07.08  Atlantic Explorer Moves Ahead with 3D Seismic in Troms II.
The seismic vessel Atlantic Explorer has started the acquisition of 3D seismic data in Troms II. The preparation of the equipment was quickly completed and the vessel therefore got started at midnight, a few hours earlier ahead of schedule.
This area is in the far eastern part of the area where 3D seismic data will be acquired. The acquisition will start in this area so as to avoid conflict with the Greenland halibut fishing that will be concluded at 24 hours on July 6. The acquisition program will last until July 31.
Source: Norwegian Petroleum Directorate

••• 04.07.08  RXT to take long term charter on newbuild at Solstrand.
Reservoir Exploration Technology ASA (RXT) has entered into a long term time charter for a newly built DP2 vessel which will be delivered during the fourth quarter of 2008.
Ocean Europe will be chartered from Vestland Offshore I AS. The vessel is being built by Hayard Solstrand AS, and will be converted to a seismic research vessel.
The time charter is for a period of seven years, with options of five more.
The vessel will be rigged with state of the art seismic equipment to operate as a shooting vessel for multi component seafloor seismic data acquisition.
It will be used for operations with RXT4 or RXT5, and as such will be part of a dual vessel operation.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 04.07.08  OHM and TGS Wrap Up Barents Sea Survey.
For the fourth year in a row OHM and TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company have collaborated on an extensive multi-client Controlled Source Electromagnetic (CSEM) acquisition program, this time in the Barents Sea.
The CSEM survey locations and parameters were decided upon following a detailed analysis of TGS’ multi-client seismic data in the region combined with OHM’s pre-survey planning methodology. Prospect specific survey design is extremely important in the Barents Sea – an area where the geology and transmission requirements for surveys change significantly between prospects. In this type of setting it is vitally important to tailor EM surveys to each prospect by building accurate geo-electric models built on the underlying seismic data; such tailored CSEM surveying will produce meaningful and decision ready images for use by the growing client base for this survey methodology.
The CSEM lines were acquired in record time, with operational efficiency onboard consistently improving, safely – the crew achieving a joint OHM & TGS HSE award, and with near 100% receiver reliability which will lead to high quality results for clients.
In appropriate geologic settings the CSEM method is used to identify highly resistive bodies such as hydrocarbon bearing reservoirs in the subsurface and thereby reduce exploration risk for oil and gas companies.
"Our previous survey programs with TGS have been very successful and highly popular with clients; OHM and TGS now have a wide range of multi-client CSEM data over 20th round blocks stretching from More in the South through to the Barents Sea in the North," said OHM Executive Chairman Dave Pratt.
"Following the success of our earlier collaborations with OHM, we are really beginning to demonstrate the value benefit that properly planned, executed and interpreted CSEM surveys can bring to clients; the Barents Sea program will similarly provide valuable information," said TGS VP & General Director of Europe Kjell E. Trommestad.
Source: OHM

••• 04.07.08  Lundin Makes Major Oil Discovery in the Caspian Sea.
Lundin Petroleum reports that its Morskaya-1 exploration well in the Lagansky block, situated in the northern Caspian Sea has encountered a major oil accumulation in the Aptian and Neocomian sandstone reservoirs. Minor amounts of gas were encountered in the overlying Albian reservoir. Morskaya-1 has been drilled to a depth of 2082 metres in a water depth of less than two metres. A significant amount of cores, wireline logs and reservoir fluid samples have been acquired. The forward program this month involves the testing of at least two of the hydrocarbon bearing reservoirs.
The Morskaya structure straddles the licence boundary of the Lagansky block and the adjoining acreage controlled by the Caspian Oil Consortium and is on trend with several major oil and gas discoveries made by Lukoil in the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea.
The Lagansky block contains significant additional prospectivity and following the testing of the Morskaya-1 well the Marine Drilling Complex (MDC) will be transported to the Laganskaya-1 well location, where drilling is expected to commence at the end of September.
Lundin Petroleum plans to drill another two wells in 2009. Petrovskaya-1 will be targeting a large anticline to the north-west and on trend with the Morskaya discovery. The second well will most likely be an appraisal well of the Morskaya discovery.
Lundin Petroleum currently has a 70 percent interest in the Lagansky block. Gazprom has a call option to acquire a 50 percent plus one share in the Lagansky block. Lundin Petroleum has a call option to acquire an additional 30 percent from minority shareholders. If both options are exercised Lundin Petroleum will retain 50 percent minus one share in the Lagansky block and Gazprom will hold a 50 percent plus one share in the Lagansky block.
Ashley Heppenstall, President and CEO of Lundin Petroleum comments; "This is a world class oil discovery which has confirmed the excellent prospectivity of the Lagansky block. It is clearly positive that the discovery is predominantly oil but based upon the data acquired it appears that the size of the discovery will be below pre-drill estimates. Further appraisal drilling will be needed to assess the full extent of the hydrocarbon reservoirs across such a large structure. It is a major milestone for Lundin Petroleum which will have a material impact upon the company. We look forward to our forthcoming exploration and appraisal program to further realise the excellent potential of this area."
Source: Lundin Petroleum

••• 04.07.08  Nido Petroleum Begsin Site Survey on SC54 in the Philippines.
Nido Petroleum Limited provided an update on its operational activities, offshore Palawan Basin, the Philippines.
On July 2, 2008 Nido and its Joint Venture partner, Kairiki Energy Limited, commenced operations in Service Contract 54 with the start of the site survey program. This is being undertaken in anticipation of drilling two firm wells with the WilBoss jack-up rig later this year in the shallow water area of Service Contract 54.
The survey will also cover the deeper water Gindara prospect which will be drilled in 2009. In total, eight areas will be surveyed for potential hazards and shallow gas with both analogue and digital grids to evaluate the sea bed and subsurface at possible drilling locations. An environmental base line study will also be conducted as part of Nido’s health, safety and environment focus. The site survey vessel Baruna Jaya has been contracted through Fugro Survey Pte Ltd and the work is scheduled to take four weeks, depending on weather conditions.
Source: Nido Petroleum Limited

••• 04.07.08  Wartsila acquires Vik-Sandvik.
Wartsila has acquired Norwegian ship design group Vik-Sandvik, a leading independent group providing design and engineering services to ship owners and the ship building industry worldwide.
Vik-Sandvik specializes in the design of high-end offshore vessels, as well as product and chemical tankers and more specialized vessels. It has for decades been recognised in the offshore market for its innovative designs and has achieved a strong global market position. As a part of Wartsila, the company has great potential for strong global growth and expansion into new market segments.
The company has its headquarters in Fitjar, in Western Norway, and it has operations in Norway, Poland, India, Brazil, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Russia and China. Vik-Sandvik has up to now been wholly owned by the Sandvik family.
Currently, Wartsila's ship design operations are carried out at its German company, Wartsila Ship Design Germany, and future ship design services will be combined within Wartsila Ship Design.
The value of the acquisition is Euros 132 million, with an additional maximum sum of Euros 38 million to be paid based on the performance of the business over the next three years.
In 2007, Vik-Sandvik's turnover was Euros 55 million and the profitability was on what Wartsila described as "a very good level." The number of employees at Vik-sandvik is 410.
Vik-Sandvik will be integrated into Wartsila Ship Design within Ship Power. All personnel - including the management - will continue as Wartsila employees. The acquisition is subject to relevant regulatory approvals, which are expected during the third quarter of 2008.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 03.07.08  Rocksource registers for EM research.
Electro-magnetic survey user Rocksource has been chosen to collaborate with Chevron, Total and StatoilHydro on a new research programme which will look at the integration of seismic and electro-magnetic data.
The new research project at the University of Bergen is being funded by the Norwegian Research Council and includes CGG Veritas and the University of Oslo’s Centre of Mathematics for Applications.
Time-lapse seismic and time-lapse electro-magnetic data will be studied within the programme, which rejoices in the title: "Reservoir monitoring and dynamic reservoir characterization with production, seismic and electromagnetic data," as well as rock physics, reservoir monitoring, plus joint inversion of different types of data.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 03.07.08  SCAN Geophysical ASA is building three 10 streamer vessels at ABG Shipyard in India.
As reported on 29 April 2008, SCAN and its yard supervisor V.Ships have been working closely with the shipyard to achieve a performance related agreement to secure more reliable production schedules and delivery dates for the vessels. This agreement has now been entered into between SCAN and ABG Shipyard.
According to the revised production schedules, new expected delivery dates for M/V SCAN Empress, M/V SCAN Finder and M/V SCAN Superior are 31 December 2008, 22 July 2009 and 31 October 2009 respectively.
Based on these expected delivery dates ABG Shipyard is committed to increased liquidated damages for later deliveries, and SCAN is committed to bonus payments for delivery on or before these dates and according to certain milestones.
Furthermore, the average vessel cost (including bonuses) has been revised to USD 91 million per vessel including seismic equipment.
SCAN will continue to seek agreements with various equipment suppliers in order to improve payment terms according to the new expected delivery dates.
Steel cutting and production of the third vessel M/V SCAN Superior commenced according to plan on 11 June as reported on 29 April 2008.
Source: SCAN Geophysical ASA

••• 02.07.08  Murmanskaya job nixed.
Aban Offshore has announced that the letter of intent from Husky Oil China for a one-well contract for jackup Murmanskaya has been terminated, due to "unforeseen circumstances." The revenue generated from the 50-day contract would have been around US$10.5 million.
The rig has been mobilized to Singapore and is being actively marketed by Aban Offshore.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 01.07.08  New start for Troms II survey.
Norway’s Petroleum Directorate has said it will re-start the seismic survey covering the Troms II area at the beginning of July after it was delayed by a fire on board a PGS vessel.
The NPD said although the survey work was delayed by the fire in the engine room on board the Atlantic Explorer operated by PGS, the programme should get underway this week – at the beginning of July.
Work is due to complete by 31 July but after that a follow-up research programme has been cancelled, the NPD indicated today, after the Norwegian Institute for Marine Research had indicated it was "impossible" to carry out the work "…In a manner which it found prudent."
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 01.07.08  OHM to deliver seismic project.
Offshore Hydrocarbon Mapping and Rock Solid Images, have agree a deal to carry out a three-year joint industry project to investigate ‘Well Integration with Seismic and Electromagnetics’ (WISE).
The aim of the project, sponsored by a consortium of oil companies and the OHM Group, is to develop new and innovative methods of jointly integrating and interpreting seismic, Controlled Source Electromagnetic (CSEM) and well log data - the ultimate objective being to provide improved maps of reservoir properties, such as hydrocarbon saturation, across a field.
Total, Chevron and DONG Energy along with the UK government’s Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) are joining the consortium, which has been brought together by the Industry Technology Facilitator (ITF).
Investigations will include establishing the optimum algorithm for remapping CSEM results into the higher resolution seismic data and developing a joint inversion methodology for seismic and CSEM data.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 30.06.08  SCAN Geophysical ASA expects to complete sea trials on out of action seismic survey vessel M/V SCAN Stigandi on or around July 7.
The vessel experienced engine failure during transit to its first survey area on June 23. The vessel was towed to port in order to investigate the damages.
Service engineers from the engine manufacturer have now concluded that the damages are mainly limited to broken cylinder liners and pistons.
A spokesman for SCAN Geophysical said, "The repair of the main engine is well underway and the engine systems are now being flushed and cleaned. Sea trials are expected to be completed on or around July 7."
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 27.06.08  3D with full onboard processing completed for Marathon.
Wavefield and its partner Geotrace have just completed one of the largest 3D onboard processing projects for Marathon in the Makassar Straits, Offshore Indonesia.
The 3,000 sq km project was processed entirely on the vessel using a large compute facility, and delivered to the client 10 days after the final shotpoint. The processing sequence included state of the art processing techniques such as sophisticated noise attenuation techniques, surface related multiple attenuation and radon demultiple.
The rapid delivery of a high quality 3D migrated volume will allow Marathon to make a timely start on their interpretation effort.
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 26.06.08  No Personnel Injured After Fire Onboard Atlantic Explorer.
PGS announced that on June 24th there was a fire in one of the auxiliary engines on the seismic vessel Atlantic Explorer, which was operating offshore Senja in Norway. The fire has been extinguished, and the vessel is under tow and retrieving streamers. All evacuated personnel have now returned to the vessel.
The vessel will be examined, and currently the best estimate is that she will resume operations in the coming two to three weeks.
There are no reported injuries; and there is no impact to the environment. There is no damage to the seismic equipment.
Source: PGS

••• 25.06.08  Fire Onboard Atlantic Explorer on June 24th.
There has been a fire in the engine room on the seismic vessel Atlantic Explorer located offshore Senja in Norway. The fire has now been extinguished, and the main engine has been stopped.
Atlantic Explorer is under tow. All non essential staff have been evacuated for the time being. The remaining crew presently has the situation under control.
The support vessel Thor Provider is standing by. Two vessels from the Norwegian coast guard are on their way, and a helicopter with a fire team is at the scene. There are no reported injuries. At this stage, we believe there is no impact to the environment.
Source: PGS

••• 25.06.08  Dockwise Inks LOI to Deliver 2 Topsides to Shtockman.
Dockwise Ltd. announced that, through one of its subsidiaries, it has signed a letter of intent with Vyborg Shipyard for the transportation and installation of two topside structures at Shtockmann gas field. The topside structures are part of the contract that Vyborg Shipyard signed with Gazflot (the operating company for Gazprom) for the construction of two semi-submersible production platforms that were designed to operate in arctic conditions. Only as soon as Vyborg Shipyard and Dockwise have signed the contract the project will be added to the order book.
The first topside structure is scheduled to be loaded at the end of April 2010 for installation between July and August 2010; the second at the end of October 2010 for installation somewhere around February 2011. The structures will be transported from Geoje Island Korea to the mating location in the Barents Sea. The final mating locations are expected to be in the Murmansk area. The weight of each topside is estimated to be around 22,000 tons.
"The strategy of Dockwise aims presence in more phases of the oil- and gas upstream production cycle," said Andre Goedee, CEO of Dockwise. "This letter of intent can be considered a new milestone in this endeavour but also in the desire of Dockwise to build lasting relationships with important Russian clients. Eventually this could require a more permanent presence of Dockwise in the area."
Source: Dockwise

••• 24.06.08  Additional Pre-Funding for Barents Sea EM Survey.
Electromagnetic Geoservices (EMGS) has announced that it has received additional industry pre-funding for its extensive multi-client electromagnetic (EM) scanning survey in the Barents Sea, ahead of Norway’s 20th exploration licensing round.
The total program now stands at 5,600 square kilometres, or 18 blocks, but could be expanded subject to additional commitments. There are a total of 30 Barents Sea blocks currently scheduled to be in the round pending official notification by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD).
This interest, and subsequent monetary commitment from the oil companies, is particularly welcomed ahead of the long-anticipated final clarification from the NPD.
The EM scanning program will reveal valuable information related to the prospectivity of the survey areas, which will give potential bidders a competitive advantage during the licensing round, and will help to target their exploration resources more effectively following a successful bid.
Source: EMGS

••• 23.06.08  The NPD’s 3D seismic survey in Troms II will commence around 24 June - delayed by approximately one and a half weeks.
The delay means that the 3D acquisition period will be somewhat shorter than originally planned. The acquisition period will be concluded as planned on July 31.
Concurrent with the 3D seismic, research will be carried out on the scare effect on fish. Fishing vessels have been hired to fish before and during the seismic activities. The research will help ascertain how far away from the sound source fish are frightened.
Furthermore, measurements will be carried out of how the sound wave pressure travels through the water, in order to establish models for sound wave dispersion. The research project will be carried out by the Institute of Marine Research.
Source: NPD

••• 23.06.08  Pacific Sword combing Mitra's blocks.
Malaysia-based Mitra Energy Ltd. is using CGGVeritas seismic vessel Pacific Sword to undertake an extensive seismic survey over its exploration blocks in Vietnam and Indonesia in preparation for a drilling campaign next year. Pacific Sword began its final survey for Mitra in the Sibaru PSC on Tuesday after having completed the seismic sweep over Blocks 28 & 29/03 in end May.
The vessel is expected to complete the 1,272 kilometre (790 mile) seismic sweep by the end of this month. The data acquired will be processed in Jakarta and expected to be ready by October for further interpretation to identify the drilling prospects.
Mitra expects to drill at least one well in the Sibaru PSC next year. Sibaru covers an area of 3,999 square kilometre (1,544 square mile) in 40 metres to 100 metres (131 ft to 328 ft) of water offshore the greater East Java Basin. Mitra holds 60 per cent of the permit, while Pearl Energy holds the remaining 40 per cent.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian operator is processing the 3,052 kilometres (1,896 miles) line seismic acquired by Pacific Sword in Blocks 28 & 29/03. The seismic survey first started in end April and was completed by the end of last month.
Mitra expects the processed seismic to be available for further interpretation by this August. The operator has committed to drill at least two wells in the two Vietnamese blocks under the production contract signed last October.
The two blocks are located in water depths of about 50 metres (164 ft), covering an area of 13,000 square kilometres (5,019 sq miles), about 150 kilometres (93 miles) off Vung Tau, Vietnam.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 20.06.08  Japan Energy seeks seismic vessel.
Japan Energy is seeking to secure a seismic vessel to survey its newly acquired WA-412-P permit offshore northwestern Australia.
The company plans to start work on a 500 square kilometre (193 sq mile) 3D seismic survey from the second quarter of next year, according to an official.
The seismic survey will form part of Japan Energy's first phase of exploration in the offshore block. The Japanese explorer also plans to drill one well during its first three years of exploration in the offshore block.
WA-412-P covers some 730 square kilometres (282 sq miles) near the North Rankin gas fields offshore northwestern Australia.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 20.06.08  Elnusa and BOS – Indonesia and beyond.
BOS signed an MOU with Elnusa this month, assuring streamer capacity in Indonesia through the provision of a high end 3D vessel, processing capability and assisting with recruitment for seismic and maritime personnel.
Jan Sovik, BOS Executive VP Marketing and Sales said that Elnusa would be instrumental in developing the BOS footprint not only in Indonesia but also elsewhere in Asia and the Pacific.
"Elnusa's knowledge of the area and previous seismic experience made it an ideal partner for building the BOS profile in Indonesia, which we hope to extend to include the wider Asia/Pacific region for both exclusive and non exclusive programs," he said.
"We are fully integrated in Norway with three BOS owned seismic vessels and a fully functional BOS DP department and we believe, through the Elnusa partnership, that we can establish a strong presence in Indonesia and beyond.
"BOS management has a long lasting relation with Elnusa and we are confident that this new MOU will be a great success for both companies now and in the years to come."
Elnusa has a long affiliation with the marine seismic industry, specialising in land and shallow water seismic data acquisition and seismic data processing in Indonesia and Asia. Elnusa is a public company listed on the Indonesian Stock Exchange and is affiliated to Pertamina, the largest Indonesian owned oil and gas corporation.
Source: BOS

••• 18.06.08  Ramform Sovereign’s First Multi-client Survey.
PGS latest vessel, the 3rd generation Ramform Sovereign, completed its first survey. The 800 sq. km 3D survey was acquired on a Multi-client basis in License PL402 in the Norwegian-Danish Basin and was underwritten by Talisman Energy Norge AS and its partners.
Acquired as high density 3D (HD3D), the vessel towed 14 streamers with a 50m separation in order to obtain high resolution data. Acquisition took just 33 days, two weeks ahead of schedule. Despite the large new number of new systems, less than 6% technical downtime was recorded. PGS is currently processing the data.
Tom Ziegler, VP Global MultiClient for PGS, commented: "We are extremely pleased that the Ramform Sovereign performed its first job, a Multi-client survey, so effectively. The survey itself represents a continuation of PGS’ year-on-year investment in highly prefunded MultiClient surveys in the North Sea arena."
Source: PGS

••• 18.06.08  Bergen Oilfield Services' (BOS) data processing division is celebrating its first contract win.
The contract, which was awarded by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD), marks a special milestone for BOS Data Processing as it was awarded within six months of the division being established.
Following the BOS 2-D contract award by NPD in Nordland VII/Troms II for data acquisition, BOS Data Processing was awarded the processing and imaging of the 14,000km data set as a combined onboard/onshore geophysical work shop.
The processing will take place onboard, while the curved ray Pre-STM and final/residual velocity analysis will take place at a BOS office in Norway.
Source: BOS

••• 18.06.08  ExxonMobil, Drillsearch complete Marina seismic sweep.
ExxonMobil and Drillsearch recently completed a 2D seismic sweep in Bonaparte Basin permit WA-318-P offshore Western Australia.
Gardline Geosurvey's seismic vessel M/V Ocean Endeavour acquired more than 1,000 kilometre (621 mile) of 2D line seismic over the Marina prospect. The survey first began on May 19 and was completed within budget over 26 days.
The survey follows the drilling of ExxonMobil's farm-in well Marina-1 last year. Traces of gas were recorded in mud logs obtained from the Marina-1 wildcat drilled by Premium Drilling jackup WilCraft in the third quarter of 2007. The partners expect to develop further exploration prospects using the data reprocessed from a previous survey and gathered from the current seismic sweep.
ExxonMobil will raise its stake in WA-318-P permit by an additional 10 percent to 75 percent after the survey is complete. Drillsearch will retain the remaining 25 percent.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 17.06.08  Rolls-Royce is to design and equip one of the world's most advanced seismic research vessels for China.
The GBP 13 million contract is also its first such contract in the important Chinese market for offshore seismic vessels.
The seismic streamer vessel has been ordered by BGP Marine China, a subsidiary of China National Petroleum Company (CNPC). It will operate worldwide in support of oil and gas exploration and production.
Anders Almestad, Rolls-Royce President – Offshore, said: "This breakthrough contract for Rolls-Royce integrated systems further strengthens our position in the growing Chinese offshore market."
"Earlier this year Rolls-Royce won a GBP 58 million contract to deliver design and equipment systems for two of the world’s most advanced offshore support vessels – that was also a first for the Chinese market."
The Rolls-Royce designed NVC 830 seismic research vessel is twin-screw with a direct drive propulsion system, improving towing capabilities for the 14 streamer cables, outfitted for autonomous operations year around in both shallow and deep waters.
The integrated solution from Rolls-Royce also includes engines, main propellers, tunnel thruster, steering gears and rudders, diesel generators, mooring winches, automation system and switchboards. The equipment is to be delivered late 2009/early 2010.
The design meets both Clean Design, and future Code for Special Purpose Ships requirements. Capabilities include low fuel consumption – for all operations - and good sea keeping capabilities. The fuel bunker capacity is based on continuous operation for up to 80 days. Comfort Class accommodation is provided for the 66 crew, with good separation from machinery spaces.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 17.06.08  StatoilHydro Receives Consent to Drill in the Barents Sea.
StatoilHydro has received consent to conduct exploration drilling of well 7224/6-1 (Arenaria) with the semisub Polar Pioneer.
The well belongs to Production License 394, which is located about 162 km north of the North Cape and has a water depth of 267 meters.
Polar Pioneer is operated by Transocean Offshore and received an Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC) in May 2004.
Planned start-up of drilling is at the beginning of July 2008, as soon as Polar Pioneer has concluded drilling operations on Ververis for StatoilHydro. The activity is expected to have a duration of 50 days.
Source: Rigzone

••• 16.06.08  First X-BOW vessel built outside Ulstein Verft launched.
WG Columbus is being built at Barreras shipyard in Spain.
The first of six planned SX124 X-BOW seismic ships for Western Geco was launched at Barreras shipyard in Vigo, Spain, on June 3rd. Ther SX124 seismic ship will be named WG Columbus and is newbuild number 1657 at the Spanish yard.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 12.06.08  "Geolog Dmitriy Nalivkin" moved back to the North Sea.
After a challenging winter working offshore the de facto independent republic of Somaliland on what can only be described as a pioneering survey the "Geolog Dmitriy Nalivkin" has moved back to the more mundane but busy North Sea.
The vessel has recently completed a 1,300 km survey in the UK sector and has now moved on to a 3,000km survey in Norwegian waters. All surveys in the North Sea are part of the North Sea Renaissance Survey, a project that has been ongoing for a number of years now for TGS Nopec.
After a short time in the North Sea and once the ice has retreated the vessel is expected to sail northward to complete the Baffin Bay Survey that was started in 2007. So, from operating in potential high risk areas in the Gulf of Aden to those in the Arctic waters, it just goes to show what a versatile and capable vessel the "G.D.Nalivkin" can be.
Source: WGP

••• 12.06.08  Indonesia offers 25 new oil and gas blocks.
Indonesia is offering another 25 oil and gas blocks during a fresh bidding round scheduled to start on June 17.
Director General for Oil and Gas Luluk Sumiarso unveiled the details of the 25 blocks at the closing of the Indonesian Petroleum Association's 32nd convention and exhibition late last month.
Seven of the blocks are in Sumatra, including East Seruway offshore northern Sumatra, South CPP onshore central Sumatra, South West Bukit Barisan onshore west and central Sumatra, Lirik II onshore Central Sumatra and West Tungkal onshore central Sumatra.
Four blocks released are in Java, Bali and Nusa Tenggara, including East Muriah and Madura off the north shore of East Java, North Bali II offshore north of Bali and North Sumbawa II offshore north of West Nusa Tenggara.
Four others are in Kalimantan and Makassar Straits, namely West Sageri and South East Ganal I in the Makassar Straits, South East Sanggata and South Bengara II onshore and offshore East Kalimantan.
The final blocks in the Sulawesi area are North Bone onshore and offshore South Sulawesi and South Matindok, Bone Bay and Buton I onshore and offshore Southeast Sulawesi.
Bid documents will be available from June 17. The submission deadline is 2.30 p.m. local time on July 31.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 11.06.08  PGS has experienced weaker than planned vessel production in its Marine segment in May and early June.
For that reason, PGS has adjusted its guidance somewhat for the full year 2008. The year on year growth in marine contract revenues is expected to be approximately 75% with a corresponding EBIT margin expected to be approximately 50%.
The reduced productivity relates primarily to weather downtime on a project offshore India caused by early start of the monsoon season. Further, two streamer incidents have contributed to the deviation in productivity.
In addition Q2 vessel utilization is impacted by vessel steaming activity with a record number of vessels moving to the North Sea and two vessels moving from India to East Asia.
For Onshore, second quarter is expected to be the seasonally weakest quarter in 2008, which is in accordance with earlier communication that market activity in second half 2008 is expected to be higher.
Despite the deviations in marine productivity, which will be fully accounted for in the quarter, PGS expects to report its strongest Q2 ever and its third strongest quarterly EBIT ever as a pure geophysical company.
The vessel allocation information for Q2 2008 will be released as planned at around the end of the quarter.
Source: PGS

••• 11.06.08  Norwegian Agency Postpones Acquisition of 3D Seismic.
The NPD's planned 3D acquisition was scheduled to start on June 15, 2008 although it is now clear that the start-up date will be postponed by at least one week.
The 3D seismic will be acquired in an area in the northern part of Nordland VII and the southern part of Troms II.
The reason for the postponement is that the 3D vessel BOS Arctic has been delayed in departing from the shipyard in Spain where it is undergoing a re-build.
The BOS Arctic is the former shrimp trawler Ocean Trawler from Fosnavag, built in 1999.
Source: Norwegian Petroleum Directorate

••• 10.06.08  Barents Sea Dispute on Agenda at Norway-Russia Talks.
An almost 40-year conflict over Barents Sea borders and Arctic issues were high on the agenda Monday for talks between the foreign ministers of Norway and Russia in northern Norway, officials in Oslo said.
"It's not a coincidence that the meeting is being held in Kirkenes (in the far north of the Scandinavian country) and will be continued in Murmansk (in northwestern Russia)," Norwegian foreign ministry spokeswoman Anne Lene Dale Sandsten told AFP.
"Norway and Russia have a joint interest in the far north and there will be a lot of talks about regional cooperation, both in the Barents Sea and in the Arctic in general," she said.
Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere and Sergei Lavrov were due to begin their talks early Monday evening. They were expected to discuss a border dispute about a large swathe of the Barents Sea believed to contain lucrative oil and gas deposits.
Oslo and Moscow have been at odds since 1970 over how to share the 176,000 square-kilometer zone.
Dale Sandsten refused to comment on the possibility of a breakthrough in the talks, during which they were to ratify an agreement reached last year which drew a 70-kilometer border around their immediate maritime zones. They were also to discuss a possible easing of transborder crossings, which today require a visa.
The meeting will continue Tuesday in Murmansk, on the Russian side of the border.
Source: Rigzone

••• 10.06.08  EMGS launches Clearplay.
Electromagnetic Geoservices (EMGS) has launched Clearplay, which it describes as the world’s first fully integrated electromagnetic (EM) system.
The Clearplay portfolio consists of three key offerings, Clearplay Find, Clearplay Test, and Clearplay Evaluate, each of which provides a compelling range of benefits primarily aimed at improving exploration efficiency and performance, reducing finding costs, and reducing risk, the company said.
Fundamental to the proposition of Clearplay is its ability to reveal information which is intimately linked to the presence of hydrocarbons.
Terje Eidesmo, chief executive officer of EMGS said: "Hydrocarbon reserves are becoming increasingly difficult to replace, finding costs are rising exponentially, and the results of traditional exploration techniques are insufficient to keep pace with consumption".
"This is despite the industry’s exploration resources being deployed at full capacity. Obviously, the industry needs to quickly deliver a significant improvement in exploration efficiency and productivity. With the launch of Clearplay, we are responding that that need."
Integrating Clearplay with the traditional exploration workflow enables a clearer and more complete understanding of the subsurface. This enables better decisions to be reached, more quickly, and the right resources being applied in the right place to maximise and accelerate return.
"Clearplay will enable our customers to find and develop more hydrocarbons, more quickly, and at lower cost per barrel than traditional methods alone. This is a serious competitive advantage", said Eidesmo.
"Clearplay is a powerful fusion of all the EM expertise and experience of EMGS with the technology, tools and processes we developed since we pioneered the use of remote EM imaging for hydrocarbons exploration almost a decade ago. We invented the EM category and with Clearplay we have just re-invented it", continued Eidesmo.
The full commercial release of Clearplay will take place in Q4 2008.
Source: EMGS

••• 09.06.08  CGX awards Fugro marine seismic contract offshore Guyana.
Toronto-based CGX Energy subsidiary CGX Resources has awarded Fugro-Geoteam a 500 square-kilometer (193 square mile) 3-D marine seismic contract offshore Guyana. The contract value is estimated to be US$13 million.
Fugro's seismic vessel R/V Geo Pacific will undertake the four-week contract in late summer.
"This 3D seismic will fulfill the minimum work commitment on our Corentyne Petroleum Prospecting Licence through its First Renewal Second Phase," stated Warren Workman, vice president of exploration for CGX. "The program has been designed to cover the four prospects for which Gustavson Associates LLC of Boulder Colorado in a report dated January 3, 2008 calculated the total best estimate prospective resource to be 2.7 billion barrels of oil.
The most significant leads are a series of structural traps in the Upper Cretaceous that we've called our Eagle Deep targets within our Corentyne PPL. These are the types of plays that if successful will confirm the Guyana /Suriname basin as being world-class. We look forward to further refinement of our interpretation with 3-D seismic, and testing of our concepts by drilling an exploration well." Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 09.06.08  Wavefield Inseis announced that it has received a letter of interim arrangement from BP Exploration Libya Ltd for one of the worlds biggest 3D seismic acquisition and onboard processing contracts.
The survey, which will take place in Libya's offshore Sirt basin, will be acquired with Wavefield's latest 3D vessel Geowave Endeavour and is expected to take approximately a year to complete. The contract will incorporate the industry's largest ever onboard processing project that includes SRME and full Pre-Stack Time Migration.
"This award is another confirmation that Wavefield Inseis are fully accepted as a professional supplier of high-end acquisition and onboard processing services. It is of fundamental importance as it also reinforces our strategy of improving company visibility and moving forward," said Atle Jacobsen, CEO of Wavefield Inseis.
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 06.06.08  Pacific Titan completes Gippsland sweep for BSO. Bass Strait Oil Co. Ltd. (BSO) completed the 295-kilometre (183-mile) 2-D seismic sweep over its Gippsland Basin VIC/P41 permit off eastern Victoria. The survey was completed in about four days using CGGVeritas seismic vessel Pacific Titan under excellent weather conditions, without incident and with minimal downtime. BSO has met the third year work commitment for the permit after completing the survey.
BSO is seeking to secure a semisubmersible rig to drill on the prospects on the permit as early as late 2009. BSO operates VIC/P41 with 45 per cent interest. Partners Moby Oil & Gas Ltd. and Eagle Bay Resources NL will retain 25 per cent and 17.5 per cent respectively, once a 12.5 per cent farm-out to Oil Basins Ltd. is complete.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 05.06.08  Island shoot seismic in Celtic Sea.
Island Oil and Gas began seismic surveys over licences 4/05 and 5/05 offshore Ireland at the Old Head of Kinsale and Schull gas fields. The 2-D operations will target a potential extension of the Old Head field to the southeast of the existing accumulation proven by the 49/23-1, 49/23-2 and 49/23-2z wells and low risk exploration prospects adjacent to the Schull and Old Head gas fields.
The contractor, the Irish Marine Institute, the national agency responsible for Marine Research, Technology, Development and Innovation, has been contracted, using the Celtic Explorer, to carry out several seismic surveys for exploration and appraisal drilling.
Island Chief Executive Paul Griffiths said, "Wholesale gas prices have increased by nearly 50 percent during the past 12 months and are projected to increase by up to 50 percent again over the next 18 months. This greatly increases the value of our Old Head and Schull gas developments.
"These new seismic surveys are designed to further investigate the potential of the Old Head and Schull areas to hold additional gas prospects adjacent to our existing fields. We anticipate being able to make a Declaration of Commerciality for a joint development of Schull and Old Head later this year, which will add further value to our portfolio. Significant cash flow would be generated from these fields upon commencement of production, which is currently targeted for 2010."
Island's partners in the Old Head and Schull Licences are Valhalla Oil and Gas Ltd. and EnCore Oil Plc.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 06.06.08  Oilex starts Timor survey.
Oilex started the first phase of offshore operations in Block JPDA 06-10 in the Timor Sea JPDA (joint production development area) between Timor-Leste and Australia. Seismic vessel Geowave Champion completed its clearances and is on location preparing to acquire the high-resolution Maura 3-D marine seismic program over an area of 2,082 square kilometers (803 square miles).
Data from the survey will be combined with existing 3-D seismic surveys to provide 3-D seismic coverage over more than 90 percent of the area of the block. Processing of the data is expected to be concluded about the end of 2008 and the interpretation of the data over the entire block is anticipated to be completed by about end of March 2009. Locations for exploration wells will then be selected for drilling starting about mid-2009.
To that end, Oilex is also in negotiations with suppliers of offshore drilling equipment to secure the services of a suitable semisubmersible to drill two wells in the first phase mid-2009 to be followed up by further drilling activity later in the year. Semisubmersible Transocean Legend is expected to be used.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 05.06.08  ODIM to carry out Chinese order.
ODIM secured a contract with China Oilfield Services Ltd. (COSL) for the delivery of automated handling systems for a 12-streamer seismic survey vessel. The contract is worth just over US$17.5 million, and the equipment is due for delivery within the end of 2009. COSL is the largest operator within 3-D marine seismic in China.
"This is the third seismic delivery from ODIM to COSL, and confirms our position in the Chinese market," said Idar Hatloy, vice president for seismic at ODIM.
Source: ODIM

••• 04.06.08  RXT Wins Seismic Contract for Campos Basin Work.
The multi-component seismic company Reservoir Exploration Technology ASA (RXT) has received an award with Petroleo Brasileiro S.A for a contract offshore Brazil. Based on a tendered contract value of US $210 million, the work represents RXT's largest ever marine OBC seismic contract and is expected to take approximately 24 months to acquire.
Under this contract award, RXT will acquire both 4C and 2C OBC seismic data over several producing fields in the Campos Basin.
"This award underscores PETROBRAS' commitment to the application of high technology for their appraisal and development plans," states RXT's President, Mike Scott. "RXT is very pleased to be part of PETROBRAS plans, and this contract award illustrates their confidence in RXT's multi-component seismic acquisition capabilities. It is further confirmation that we are on track with our business strategy to actively deploy our technology in the major oil development and producing regions of the world."
Source: RXT

••• 03.06.08  Pacific Titan starts new BSO survey.
Bass Strait Oil Co. Ltd. (BSO) on June 1 started a 250-kilometre (155-mile) 2-D seismic sweep in the east of the Gippsland Basin permit VIC/P41 after completing the Targa survey in its 100-per-cent-owned Bass Basin permits T/42 and T/43P.
CGGVeritas seismic vessel Pacific Titan moved on to the Gippsland Basin after acquiring 1,192 kilometres (741 miles) of new line seismic in the Bass Basin under the Targa survey. The Targa survey will meet the third year work commitment for T/42P and T/43P, while the Gippsland Basin survey will meet the third year work commitment for VIC/P41. The latest seismic sweep is aimed at maturing leads in the eastern part of VIC/P41, particularly the Lead A feature in the southeastern corner as identified by a 2003 2-D survey.
BSO is looking to finalise a farm-out deal to cover the costs of a further exploration drilling programme in VIC/P41. In addition to the leads covered by the seismic sweep, the operator has also identified drilling prospects in the west and the south of VIC/P41. An interpretation of a 2005 3-D seismic survey revealed several large prospects along the Rosedale Fault trend analogous to ExxonMobil's Kipper oil and gas field to the west of the permit. To the south of the permit lie the Oscar prospects, which appear to be on trend with and analogous to the producing Basker Manta Gummy oil fields.
BSO is seeking to secure a semisubmersible rig to drill on the prospects as early as late 2009. BSO operates VIC/P41 with 45 per cent interest. Partners Moby Oil & Gas Ltd. and Eagle Bay Resources NL will retain 25 per cent and 17.5 per cent respectively, once a 12.5 per cent farm-out to Oil Basins Ltd. is complete.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 02.06.08  Polarcus orders X-BOW seismic vessels.
A new company has been formed by some of the individuals involved in the formation of Eastern Echo, which ordered a number of X-BOW seismic ships from Dubai Drydocks and was subsequently acquired by Schlumberger.
Polarcus describes itself as "a pure play marine geophysical company with a pioneering environmental agenda, specializing in high-end towed streamer data acquisition from pole to pole." Polarcus is launching a fleet of six advanced seismic vessels designed by Norway's Ulstein Design AS which also incorporate the innovative ULSTEIN X-BOW hull.
Four of these are innovative high end 3-D seismic vessels with a 12 streamer configuration and two are multipurpose seismic vessels with a 2-D/source configuration, which are also "future proofed" for six streamer operations.
Polarcus will operate worldwide providing high-end towed marine 3-D and 4-D contract acquisition services and multi client projects to the oil and gas industry. The company's vision is "to be a pioneer in an industry where the frontiers of seismic exploration are responsibly expanded without harm to our world."
Among other aims, the company aims to become what it called the "supplier of choice" for operations in the Polar regions.
The company's new vessels are being built in Dubai, UAE, by Drydocks World - Dubai LLC. The first 12-streamer 3-D vessel will be operational in the third quarter of 2009, with all six vessels fully operational within 2010.
Polarcus has employed a well-established management team mainly from within the seismic industry, with recent senior experience from Eastern Echo, PGS Geophysical, and Schlumberger WesternGeco.
Polarcus has signed design and equipment agreements with Ulstein Design AS and shipbuilding contracts with Drydocks World - Dubai for the first four vessels. Polarcus has also signed design and equipment agreements with Ulstein Design AS and secured vessel slots with Drydocks World - Dubai for vessels 5 and 6. Final agreements and shipbuilding contracts for these last two vessels are expected to be signed by the end of the second quarter of 2008.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 02.06.08  DOF Subsea Norway Chooses Kongsberg Equipment.
Kongsberg reports that once again DOF Subsea Norway has selected a Kongsberg Maritime multibeam echo sounder. They recently purchased a third 0.5 x 1 degree high resolution EM 710 multibeam echo sounder for use in the North Sea.
The EM 710 system will be fitted to the multipurpose support vessel Skandi Bergen, a DP II vessel. System delivery is set for May 2008 and the transducers will be fitted into the hull during the summer. Currently shipyard and hull installation have not been decided for this new addition to the DOF Subsea Norway fleet. The order confirms the company's strong commitment to the Survey/ Inspection, Maintenance and Repair (IMR) market.
The first two EM 710 systems are installed on onboard the vessels Geosund and Geograf.
The EM 710 multibeam echosounder is a high to very high resolution seabed mapping system capable of meeting all relevant survey standards. The system configuration can be tailored to the user's requirement, allowing for choice of beam widths as well as transmission modes. The minimum survey depth is from less than 3 meters below the transducers, and the maximum depth is approximately 2000 meters.
DOF Subsea Norway is a leading subsea services and survey company based in Bergen, Norway. The company aims to meet the challenges posed by industry by having available the best equipment, vessels and personnel. DOF Subsea Norway has the "know how" needed to perform the most complex tasks as well as sufficient capacity and flexibility to meet the demands of large projects and the constantly changing levels of activity that characterise the industry.
Source: Kongsberg

••• 30.05.08  RXT signs deal for fourth multi-component survey operation.
Multi-component seismic company Reservoir Exploration Technology ASA (RXT) has signed a letter of intent for a survey contract in Norway. The contract value is approximately US$21 million.
The three-month survey will be acquired with the company's "RXT4" crew, and is scheduled to commence in the third quarter of this year. RXT4 will be deployed on Vestland Marine's Vikland, which is being modified as a combined source and cable handling vessel for RXT. The vessel is expected to be ready for the RXT work in July.
RXT specializes in multi component seismic sea floor acquisition. Multi-component seismic can resolve imaging challenges that cannot be resolved with towed streamer seismic, such as surveys in areas with numerous platforms in place, and in shallow water and transition zones. RXT officials claim their technology also gives better data quality for appraisal and development activities.
In addition to the RXT4 crew, the company expects to deploy its fifth and sixth crews later this year and in 2009, respectively. These crews will deploy on purpose-built vessels. RXT's other crews are working in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, the North Sea and the Caspian Sea.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 30.05.08  Seaplane legend returns to oil & gas industry.
Antilles Seaplanes, LLC, declares the rebirth of the legendary G-21 "Goose" amphibious aircraft in a completely updated version. The seaplane was previously used successfully by the oil & gas industry around the world for transport of petroleum personnel and resupply of operations in remote regions. Now back in new production, it is garnering a high level of renewed interest by drilling and exploration companies in support of their global ventures.
Based on the classic Grumman Goose amphibian, the "Antilles Super Goose" has been modernized to current day aviation specifications to include fast, powerful turboprop engines, retractable wing floats, state-of-the-art avionics, air conditioning, a large cargo door and a variety of other technological improvements over the original airplane. An optional private toilet in the tail is also available to accommodate longer flights.
The Super Goose is a highly versatile 10-seat "true" amphibian, designed to take off and land on water (minimum depth of 36 inches in oceans, islands, bays, rivers or lakes), regular paved runways, rough dirt strips, remote grass strips and packed snow. With its retractable landing gear, the Super Goose offers speed, rough water capability, cross wind ability, payload, range, economics, and ruggedness unmatched by any other aircraft in its type and class. It is the true "All Terrain Vehicle," conquering air, water and land.
The Super Goose has a generously proportioned "quick change" interior for passengers and/or cargo, including additional storage areas in both the nose and the tail. The aircraft is powered by proven twin Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A turboprop engines that produce a cruise speed of over 200 knots (230+ miles per hour); carries a useful load of people, fuel and cargo in excess of 5,400 pounds; and has a range of over 1,200 nautical miles (six hours plus instrument flight reserves) on a tank of globally available Jet A fuel.
The price of a brand new Super Goose currently is USD $2.95 million.
Source: Scandoil

••• 30.05.08  Gazprom and Lukoil make Caspian discovery.
According to reports from Reuters, Lukoil and Gazprom have discovered a large oil and gas field in Russian waters of the Caspian Sea. The field is in the Tsentralnaya structure, 150 kilometers (93.2 miles) east of Makhachkala, the capital of Russian Federation member the Republic of Dagestan.
In 2003, Gazprom and Lukoil formed a joint venture to develop oil and gas resources in the region. At the time, Lukoil estimated that recoverable oil reserves of Tsentralnaya totaled 521.1 million tons while gas reserves came to 97.1 Bcm (3.4 Tcf).
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 29.05.08  Aker Exploration books BOS Arctic.
Aker Exploration has awarded Bergen Oilfield Services (BOS) a contract to perform 3-D seismic marine services in the Norwegian Sea. BOS will use vessel BOS Arctic to cover 300 square kilometers (115 square miles), beginning in the third quarter of 2008.
BOS Executive Vice President of Marketing and Sales Jan Sovik said, "This contract is important for BOS and we are looking forward to working further with Aker Exploration.We are confident that this six streamer vessel is well suited to undertake the program with superior results.
"BOS will continue to work towards building a solid pipeline of ongoing contracts not only for the Norwegian Sea but worldwide."
Source: BOS

••• 28.05.08  GC Reiber to acquire 2-D vessel.
GC Rieber Shipping has entered into agreements with the current vessel owner and Fugro Geoteam to acquire a 2D (source) vessel built in 1988.
The vessel is expected to be acquired early July 2008 and will subsequently be chartered to Fugro Geoteam until 1 March 2009, whereafter various forms of employment are being evaluated. The commercial conditions in the agreements are agreed by the parties not to be disclosed.
Source: GC Reiber Shipping

••• 27.05.08  CGGVeritas to survey Korean waters for WoodsideBy Hwee Hwee Tan.
Woodside Petroleum and Korea National Oil Corp. (KNOC) have contracted CGGVeritas to conduct a 2D seismic survey in South Korea's offshore Ulleung Basin next month.
CGGVeritas vessel Duke is set to arrive in South Korean waters within the next few days. The survey will take place at water depths between 1,000 metres and 2,000 metres (3,281 ft to 6,562 ft), covering Block 8, east of Yeongdeok, North Gyeongsang Province and the northern portions of Block 6-1, about 30 kilometres (19 miles) east of the industrial city of P'ohang.
Data acquired from the survey will be processed later this year to identify any drilling prospects by June 2009. The survey will mark the first exploration project undertaken by a major oil and gas company along the Korean Peninsula in 16 years.
Woodside is understood to have committed at least US$20 million on the equal sharing exploration project with KNOC. The partners were granted a two- to four-year concession to explore the 13,000 square kilometre (5,019 square mile) offshore blocks last year.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 27.05.08  Murmansk attracts Norwegians with Shtokman.
Norwegian companies bidding for work on the giant Barents Sea gas development Shtokman now number 40 in Murmansk with 130 hopefulls seeking entry into the city, an official StatoilHydro base, a supplier conference in Bodo northern Norway heard at the weekend.
September will mark the Shtokman Development Co.’s first deadline for giving Russian authorities a plan for the 3.8-trillion-cubic-metre arctic gas field’s development and operation. With early engineering underway, some 56 months of construction are due to begin this September, according to Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten.
"The platform will be the biggest challenge," a StatoilHydro leader in Russian was quoted as saying. He said companies who "whined" about decisions being made differently had no business in Russia.
The forerunning Shtokman concept is still a floating, disconnectable spar able to dodge roving icebergs of the two-million-tonne variety.
The StatoilHydro source said planners saw little difficulty making lanfall with their pipeline, and plant for liquefied natural gas, or LNG, and its jetty in Orlovka Bay still looked doable, though timetables are seen as tight.
"According to the plan, we should start this year by advancing the railroad and power to Teriberka (village)," he was quoted as saying.
A complete run-down of Shtokman, Goliat and recent arctic operations appeared in the latest edition of Scandinavian Oil-Gas Magazine.
Several Norwegian firms, like builder Reinertsen, already have a foothold in Murmansk, and have been reported on exhaustively in the Magazine, a affiliate.
Aftenposten, meanwhile, reported that Reinertsen has since evolved in Murmansk, the Russian port in the Eastern Barents, with scores of Russian engineers and a Russian design firm.
First piped gas is due in 2013, with first LNG in 2014.
Source: Scandoil

••• 26.05.08  ExxonMobil starts Bonaparte seismic sweep.
ExxonMobil and Drillsearch have chartered Gardline Geosurvey seismic vessel M/V Ocean Endeavour for a 2D survey in the Bonaparte Basin permit WA-318-P offshore Western Australia.
M/V Ocean Endeavour began the 1,000 kilometre (621 mile) seismic sweep on May 19 and is expected to take about 28 days to complete the acquisition.
ExxonMobil will raise its stake in WA-318-P permit by an additional 10 percent to 75 percent after the survey is complete. Drillsearch will retain the remaining 25 percent.
The survey follows the drilling of ExxonMobil's farm-in well Marina-1 last year. Traces of gas were recorded in mud logs obtained from the Marina-1 wildcat drilled by Premium Drilling jackup WilCraft in the third quarter of 2007. The partners expect to develop further exploration prospects using the data reprocessed from a previous survey and gathered from the current seismic sweep.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 23.05.08  PGS sets streamer record with Ramform Sovereign.
Petroleum Geo-Services set a new industry streamer towing record achieved by its recently delivered vessel, Ramform Sovereign. The vessel, working on a contract project in the Norwegian North Sea, set the record by deploying 17 streamers. The previous record was 16, held by Ramform Victory.
The project is an advanced HD4D project with the streamers towed 164 feet (50 m) apart. Despite this being the highest number of streamers ever towed, deployment was carried out in just 84 hours, which is equivalent to the time routinely taken for much smaller conventional streamer spreads.
PGS President of Marine Acquisition Vidar Hovland said, "This is another testament to the abilities of the Ramform platform, and to the crews that operate them. We are extremely happy with the performance of the vessel during the first weeks of operation. We are confident that we will achieve new towing records later this year when Ramform Sovereign starts on the industry's largest ever HD4D job for Petrobras where parts of the job will be conducted with 18 streamers at 50-meter separation."
Ramform Sovereign is the first in a new series of third generation Ramform vessels known as the S-class. PGS will take delivery of a second vessel of this type, Ramform Sterling, in the second quarter of 2009.
Source: PGS

••• 23.05.08  Fishery interests stopped oil drilling.
In a surprise move, the Norwegian government yesterday halted plans for the collection of seismic data in the Lofoten waters in northern Norway. Sensitive relations with the fish industry in the region is the reason, the minister of oil and energy admits 2008-05-22.
Despite strong opposition from the fish industry and environmental organisations, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate planned to start the seismic studies on May 15. Then the government turned around.
Minister of Oil and Energy, Aslaug Haga says that the government has decided to give itself more time in the issue. At the same time, she maintains that the parliament has decided that seismic studies should be conducted in the area, and that the plans therefore sooner or later must be executed.
The minister says the government will take a decision on the issue in the course of the week, newspaper Nordlys reports with reference to NTB. At the same time, the Ministry of Environment has now requested the Pollution Control Authority (SFT) to consider whether the seismic studies are in line with national environmental legislation.
In the background lures oil major StatoilHydro, which is keen on a quick opening of the resource-rich Lofoten waters. Currently, the area is protected by a government-approved management plan. However, the plan is to be revised by 2010, and the oilmen will then be ready for drilling.
Source: BarentsObserver

••• 23.05.08  TGS Launches New Multi-Client 3D Survey On The Norwegian Continental Shelf.
TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company has started a 1500 square kilometer multi-client 3D survey in Quadrants 7016 and 7116 in the Troms III area.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate recently recommended these blocks for the 20th Concession Round. TGS developed the concept for the Troms III 3D survey based upon interpretations of TGS multi-client 2D seismic and controlled source electromagnetic data in the region.
Survey acquisition will be performed by the newly upgraded 3D vessel GeoBarents utilizing an 8 x 6000 meter streamer configuration. The survey data will be processed by TGS Imaging and will include quick look and final prestack time migrated volumes. Preliminary data for the Troms III 3D will be available for industry use in August 2008 and final data is expected to be available in late Q3 2008.
The Troms III 3D survey is supported by strong industry pre-funding.

••• 23.05.08  Petrobas discovers new oil accumulation in the Santos Basin.
The consortium formed by Petrobras (66%, operator), Shell (20%), and Galp Energia (14%), has proved the presence of oil in pre-salt reservoirs, in block BM-S-8, in ultra-deep waters in the Santos Basin, after drilling well 1-BRSA-532A-SPS (1-SPS-52A). Preliminary analyses indicate oil gravity is between 25 and 28 єAPI, comparable to that of the other pre-salt oils found in the Santos Basin.
This pioneer well is located some 250 km off the coast of the state of Sгo Paulo, at 2,139 m from the water line. Drilling was completed on May 18, at a depth of 6,773 meters and the discovery was proved via an oil sampling by means of a formation test in reservoirs situated at a depth of nearly 6,000 meters.
The Consortium is preparing a Discovery Assessment Plan to be sent to the NPA, as provided for in the Concession Agreement, giving continuity to the investment activities for block BM-S-8.
Source: Scandoil

••• 22.05.08  Petrobras Intends to Hire 40 Drilling Rigs.
Petrobras says that during a meeting held with the Federal Government, corporate entities, and Brazilian industry representatives, the company announced its intent to hire 40 drillships and semisubs to operate in deep and ultra-deep waters. The plan foresees the construction and receipt of the 40 units through 2017, and priority will be given to building them in Brazil.
An invitation to tender is currently underway for the chartering of 24 vessels to support exploration and production activities. Bidding is expected to take place for another 122 of such vessels in the next six years. The 146 support vessels will be built in Brazil.
Source: Petrobras

••• 22.05.08  ODIM maintained strong growth into 2008 owing to a high level of activity in the offshore sector.
An order intake of NOK 542 million in the first quarter brought the backlog to a new record of NOK 2 162 million, following a particularly strong quarter for the seismic segment with a reported intake of NOK 340 million.
Revenues for the first quarter came to NOK 450.2 million, up 52.7 % from the corresponding period of last year. EBITDA was 78.5 million, an increase of 66.3 per cent from the first quarter in 2007. The EBITDA margin reached 17.4 per cent, which was 1.4 percentage points higher than in the corresponding period of last year.
The pace of growth has been maintained into the second quarter, and the order intake is already at NOK 640 million with the second half of the period still to come. So far in 2008 the order intake is in the excess of NOK 1.200 million.
"ODIM is experiencing a significant level of activity and we once again deliver solid financial results. I am especially pleased that ODIM is able to keep margin high when resource shortages prevail in virtually every part of the oil service industry," comments CEO Jogeir Romestrand.
Source: ODIM

••• 21.05.08  Survey group Wavefield Inseis says its results for the first three months this year are below expectations in what it has described as a "difficult" quarter.
Consolidated revenue was also doubled to US $60.2 m from $33 m last year, and operating profit – on an earnings before interest and tax basis – were $11.4 m compared with $12.7 m last year.
But net income slipped to $5.4 m from $10.6 m in the first quarter last year.
Wavefield described the trading period as weaker than anticipated, due to the cancellation of wide azimuth (WAZ) survey programme, plus an unscheduled yard stay for the Geowave Master and an early transit back to the North Sea for another survey ship, the Geowave Commander.
Atle Jacobsen, Wavefield’s chief executive added: "We have put behind us a difficult quarter, with results below our own expectations. The combination of factors contributing to the quarter results are seen as a ‘one off,’ and not as a result of changes in the market fundamentals, our targets, or the way we manage our business."
Turning to the unsettled question of the merger with TGS Nopec, he added: "Despite operating in the shadow of the merger conflict since the autumn, the company is now back on track, performing and developing according to our initial stand alone strategy."
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 21.05.08  The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate said its seismic data acquisition has been postponed for at least a few days due to technical problems with the seismic equipment.
Start-up could be delayed for two days, although it could take longer, depending on the seriousness of the problem. An engineer has been sent to the BOS Atlantic vessel to examine the equipment.
When the seismic data acquisition starts, there will be daily bulletins on where the BOS Atlantic will be operating in the next 24 hours, the NPD said.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 20.05.08  Orient Explorer completes Blackwood seismic sweep.
PGS Australia seismic vessel M/V Orient Explorer completed a 3-D seismic sweep over MEO Australia Ltd.'s Blackwood discovery in NT/P68 permit off Darwin.
The 384 square kilometres (142 sq miles) of 3-D seismic acquired on the Greater Blackwood structure will be processed at PGS facilities in Perth.
The seismic processing is designed to correct for the near surface reefs and channels to improve depth converison, mapping and potential resource estimation of the Greater Blackwood feature that was recently intersected by the Blackwood-1 discovery well.
Blackwood-1 intersected a 49-metre (161-ft) gross gas column after being drilled to a measured depth of 3,225 metres (10,581 ft) by Seadrill jackup West Atlas. The seismic sweep will facilitate further appraisal drilling on the Blackwood discovery. MEO is banking on the commerciality of the Blackwood find to support the development of the Tassie Shoal Methanol project.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 19.05.08  Elixir Moves Forward with Seismic Survey Offshore Sierra Leone.
Elixir Petroleum advises that the acquisition of the 1,222 square kilometers of 3D seismic survey over Block SL-4 continues without incident. The 3D survey is designed to better define and mature the large number of significant leads and play types identified from 2D seismic data acquired over Block SL-4 in 2003.
Approximately 60% of the seismic data has been acquired, and the survey is due to be completed on schedule in June 2008.
Block SL-4 is located offshore Sierra Leone in West Africa. Water depths in the 4,429-square-kilometer block range from 100 meters to more than 3,500 meters. Elixir serves as operator of the block and holds 35% interest in the project.
Source: Elixir Petroleum

••• 16.05.08  New deal for ODIM.
ODIM has landed a US $7.5m contract with Fugro Geoteam for deliveries of seismic vessel handling equipment.
The equipment, which will be used for three-dimensional seismic surveys, represents the second part of the package and will be installed on Geo Coral, the customer’s third newbuild vessel.
As with the earlier deliveries, the equipment being supplied by ODIM will be electrically driven. Deliveries are due to begin in the third quarter of 2009.
Source: ODIM

••• 15.05.08  Brazil's federal energy company Petrobras will order 146 vessels for its offshore exploration and production (E&P) operations over the next six years.
BNamericas reported that Petrobras will lease 64 platform supply vessels, 54 vessels to handle large anchors, 18 ships to collect oil spills and 10 towage units. Petrobras is currently ordering 24 of the 146 vessels it needs.
Petrobras will lease the vessels following a bidding process. According to bidding conditions, 70 to 80 percent of the vessel's content must be made in Brazil.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 15.05.08  CGGVeritas Q1 Revenue Up 12%.
CGGVeritas announced its first quarter 2008 unaudited financial results. Group Revenue was EUR585 million ($873 million), compared to EUR592 million ($777 million). This 12% growth in dollars was driven by sustained sales of Sercel equipment and a high level of land and marine contract activity in Services.
Group Operating Income was EUR123 million ($184 million), down 14% in EUR and stable in dollars, with a 21% operating margin, compared to EUR144 million ($188 million) and a 24% margin last year. Group operating income includes EUR26 million ($39 million) of elimination of margin mainly related to Sercel internal sales and corporate general administration expenses. Without the adverse effect of the $/EUR exchange rate during the quarter, the operating margin would be 23%. Group EBITDAs(1) was EUR230 million ($343 million) compared to EUR258 million ($339 million), EBITDAs margin was 39%. Net Income was EUR64 million ($96 million) compared to EUR69 million ($91 million), resulting in an EPS of EUR2.28 per ordinary share and $0.68 per ADS.
Industrial Capex was EUR51 million ($77 million) while multi-client Capex reached a peak EUR97 million ($145 million) to develop our offshore library, particularly our two concurrent leading wide-azimuth programs in Garden Banks and Walker Ridge in the Gulf of Mexico.
Source: Rigzone/CGGVeritas

••• 14.05.08  Husky secures Murmanskaya charter.
Aban Offshore subsequently secured a letter of intent from Husky Oil China Ltd. for a 50-day charter of Premium Drilling jackup Murmanskaya. The rig is contracted to drill an exploration well in East China Sea Block 35/18 beginning in June.
Murmanskaya is currently serving a contract with Roc Oil in South China Sea Block 22/12. The jackup was originally chartered to Exxon Neftegas Ltd. to drill two wells over a 160-day campaign in Russia, but ExxonMobil cancelled the US$34 million contract due to geopolitical issues, according to sources close to the development.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 13.05.08  Geo Caribbean "getting ready to sail".
A new addition to the Fugro seismic fleet is close to completion at Bergen Yards.
A sister ship to Geo Celtic, Geo Caribbean is a 3-D/4-D vessel and will also be capable of deploying 12 solid streamers of up to 8km in length.
The vessel will have an overall length of 100.80m, breadth of 24/28m and can accommodate 69 persons onboard.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 12.05.08  SCAN Geophysical signs LOI from Petrobras for 8,500 km 2D survey off Portugal.
SCAN Geophysical ASA has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) from Petrobras International Braspetro B. V. – Portugal Branch, on behalf of a consortium formed with Galp and Partex, for an 8,500 km high technology, long offset 2D survey off Portugal. SCAN’s M/V Geo Searcher, currently working in the Mediterranean, is scheduled to commence operations by the end of June 2008.
The M/V Geo Searcher will be utilizing a 10,000 meter long MSX solid (gel-filled) streamer system and an approximately 4,000 cubic inch source array designed for low frequency output.
"Equipped with state-of-the-art seismic recording, positioning, source and processing systems, the Geo Searcher is ideally suited for worldwide high technology long offset 2D geophysical survey operations, such as this project for Petrobras" said Kjell Karlsson, vice president of sales and marketing for SCAN. "We believe the demand for these kinds of surveys will grow in the future," he added.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 12.05.08  PGS posts record revenue.
Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) enjoyed its highest quarterly revenues to date, with a 30 percent rise. The company's first quarter revenue for 2008 was US$456.6 million, up US$104.1 million. The operating profit came in at US$166.1 million, excluding the gain from sale of seismic vessel Ramform Victory, up US$46.6 million, or 39 percent, compared to the first quarter of 2007.
PGS saw a strong operating profit of US$174.2 million in its marine sector in the first quarter of 2008, excluding the gain from sale of Ramform Victory, up US$60.5 million, or 53 percent, from the same period last year. This was driven by improved contract margins and high vessel utilization.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 12.05.08  EMGS set to survey Barents Sea.
Electromagnetic Geoservices (EMGS) received industry pre-funding to begin an extensive multi-client electromagnetic (EM) scanning survey in the Barents Sea, ahead of Norway's 20th exploration licensing round. At more than 3,000 square kilometers (1,158 square miles), the survey is a milestone in the adoption of EMGS's proprietary EM scanning technology, the company claims. The program will be expanded subject to additional commitments.
EMGS Chief Executive Terje Eidesmo said, "Our unique EM scanning technology is reinventing how operators search for hydrocarbons. Explorers now have a means for rapidly identifying leads and assessing the prospectivity of new license blocks more accurately than previously possible, before bidding or committing significant resources to new ventures."
Unlike traditional techniques, which rely on seismic surveys to indicate potential reservoir structures, EM scanning technology searches for electrical properties (resistivity) that can indicate the location of hydrocarbons directly. Scanning with EM techniques offers the additional benefit of revealing potential leads such as stratigraphic traps, which are not easily visible on seismic maps. Information derived from EM scanning is displayed as maps and 3-D volumes, and is easily integrated with seismic information and geological models. Combining EM techniques with conventional methods enables a faster and more accurate assessment of new blocks, and better exploration decisions.
Source: EMGS

••• 12.05.08  Lansdowne complete Irish seismic shoot.
Lansdowne Oil & Gas completed its 2-D seismic acquisition programme on Licence 5/08 in the Celtic Sea offshore Ireland. Wavefield Inseis carried out the survey using seismic vessel M/V Malene Ostervold. The survey was completed ahead of schedule and under budget.
A total of 489 kilometers (303 miles) of 2-D seismic data was acquired over two large structures, Amergin and Eremon, which were identified on 1986 seismic data. Amergin has been independently verified as having best-case potentially recoverable prospective resources of 63 million BOE.
The data will be processed in the next few months and integrated into Lansdowne's mapping, which should give a drilling target to test the Jurassic oil potential in the area.
Source: Lansdowne Oil & Gas

••• 12.05.08  3D Oil gets Fugro to process 2-D seismic.
3D Oil Ltd. contracted Fugro to process the 2-D line seismic recently acquired by CGG Veritas' Pacific Titan over Bass Basin permit T/41P. Pacific Titan completed the third leg of its Bass Basin survey over T/41P last Sunday. The 2,200 kilometres (1,367 miles) of 2-D line seismic data acquired will be mapped to mature the leads in the permit into drilling prospects.
The entire exercise will fulfill the work requirements for the first three years of exploration. 3D Oil expects to reach a decision on whether to proceed with a secondary work programme for T/41P in 12 months. The operator will need to acquire 3-D seismic and to drill an exploration well from during the second term of exploration in the permit.
The total cost for the first three years of exploration is expected to fall below the original budget of A$4.36 million (US$4.12 million), while the cost of the secondary work programme was last estimated at around A$11.6 million (US$10.9 million).
The 2-D survey for T/41P is one of four Bass Basin surveys lined up for 2008, as part of a multi-operator consortium using Pacific Titan. The vessel previously completed two other seismic acquisitions for Santos and Tap Oil and is now working on Bass Strait Oil's Targa survey over permits T/42 and T/43P.
3D Oil is the sole operator of T/41P. The permit covers an area of 2,805 square kilometres (1,083 sq miles) located in an average water depth of less than 80 metres (262 ft).
Source: 3D Oil

••• 08.05.08  StatoilHydro contracts CGG Veritas for Canadian work.
CGG Veritas will carry out a large multipurpose seismic survey in the Jeanne d'Arc Basin off the east coast of Newfoundland and Labrador in the spring and summer of 2008 for StatoilHydro and partners. The 965-square-mile (2,500 sq km) survey will comprise 3-D and 4-D seismic surveys and will take approximately 140 days.
StatoilHydro will operate the southern part of the survey area covering exploration licenses 1100 and 1101 as well as the Petro-Canada-operated Terra Nova production licenses. Husky Energy will operate the northern part of the survey, which includes the White Rose production license. Seismic vessel M/V Veritas Vantage arrived in St. John's harbor last weekend for final preparations before starting the survey.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 08.05.08  Repsol, CGX To Launch 3-D Shoot Offshore Guyana.
Spain's Repsol-YPF and Canada's CGX Energy are expected next month to begin exploring for oil in a jointly held concession off the coast of Guyana, officials said the country's capital Georgetown Wednesday.
The head of the Petroleum Division of the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, Newell Dennison, said the two companies plan to gather three-dimensional seismic data in the Georgetown Block.
"That is still very much the desire that that done be done this year," Dennison told Efe.
Kerry Sully, the president of Toronto-based CGX Energy, told a conference of oil investors late last month that his company plans to conduct an independent 3-D seismic study on its individual concession at the same time that it cooperates with Repsol to conduct a similar exercise in their jointly held concession.
Sully said the two firms could save as much as $23 million by working together on the seismic studies.
He said CGX was also closely watching Repsol's efforts to drill a commercially viable well in a concession off the coast of neighboring Suriname.
"We think that if Repsol happens to be successful, we're going to see a change in the emotion of this particular basin," Sully said, referring to estimates that the Spanish firm's Suriname concession contains between 70 million and 170 million barrels of oil.
The U.S. Geological Survey says the waters off Guyana and Suriname might hold as much as 15.3 billion barrels of oil. The U.N. International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea last year awarded Georgetown sovereignty over a nearly 13,000-square-mile expanse of the Atlantic Ocean that had also been claimed by Suriname.
Source: Rigzone

••• 07.05.08  Fugro orders third AUV, names new CSV.
Dutch company Fugro has placed an order with Kongsberg for a third Hugin Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV), with delivery expected in the fourth quarter of 2008. The AUV will be stationed in Singapore to serve the deepwater market in the Asia Pacific region. The unit will be used to provide geological and geophysical information in water depths of up to 3,000 meters (9,842 feet), assisting with the design of subsea structures and the development of oil and gas fields.
Fugro also recently held a naming ceremony for its latest ROV and construction support vessel, Fugro Saltire. The vessel will now move to Kristiansand in southern Norway for installation of its crane system.
The 110-meter (360-foot) long, 24-meter (78.7-foot) wide DNV +1A1 class vessel has room for 105 personnel, and can deploy two Fugro work-class FCV3000 ROV systems from its hangar. The vessel contains an integrated ROV control and survey management center to oversee operations. When the vessel is ready for service in June, it will be equipped with a 150-ton knuckle boom crane with active heave compensation and a 10-ton auxiliary subsea crane.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 07.05.08  Bass Basin commences seismic survey.
Bass Strait Oil Company Limited advises that data acquisition for the 'Targa' offshore 2D seismic survey commenced on 4 May 2008. The Targa survey will record 1,110 km of new seismic data in permits T/42P and T/43P off the north coast of Tasmania.
BAS holds 100% of T/42P and T/43P, an area of over 6100 sq km. The Targa survey will fulfil the Year 3 permit obligation for both permits. BAS views this Durroon Sub-basin area of the Bass Basin as an under-explored 'grass roots' exploration opportunity and the Targa survey is designed to further define a number of high-potential leads identified from our existing database. There is increasing exploration industry interest in the Bass Basin. Production from the Yolla field is now well established and the basin area is now fully permitted.
The Targa survey is one of four Bass Basin surveys recorded in 2008, as part of multioperator consortium utilizing the Pacific Titan vessel. In terms of drilling activity in the Basin, Beach Petroleum has farmed-in to drill new prospects in the south of the Basin, in areas outside of the BAS permits. Beach's drilling operations are scheduled for late 2008.
The Targa survey will be recorded in two tranches. The recording of this first tranche of several lines has been accelerated to ensure an efficient operational sequence for the Pacific Titan vessel. The Pacific Titan is scheduled to make a port call later this week and will then proceed to another survey, prior to re-commencing the Targa survey, with recording of the second tranche scheduled for later this month.
Source: Scandoil

••• 06.05.08  PGS Awarded the Industry's Largest Ever HD4D Campaign.
Petroleum Geo-Services ASA has been awarded by Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. a contract to undertake the largest High Density 4D (HD4D) marine seismic survey campaign ever in the industry, based on a tendered contract value of USD 251 million. President & CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen in PGS states in a comment "This contract is an important strategic milestone to PGS, as we are providing the most sophisticated technology in the business, with the newest vessel in the industry, in the area where the worlds most significant recent discovery is made."
The award is comprised of a "Firm Program" of five surveys, totaling 4,945 square kilometers and an "Alternative Program" of up to an additional 120 days of data acquisition. The Campos, Santos and Espirito Santo Basin surveys are scheduled to begin in October 2008, using PGS' latest state-of-the-art vessel, the Ramform Sovereign, which was christened in Еlesund, Norway on March 12, 2008. The current estimated contract value to PGS is USD 180-200 million.
High Density Time Lapsed surveys are used for reservoir management as they require optimal seismic quality in terms of resolution and repeatability. PGS' Ramform technology is tailored for these requirements due to the size and density of its streamer spreads. The Ramform Sovereign will provide Petrobras with the largest, most efficient spreads available to the industry - 18 streamers x 6,000m streamer length x 50m streamer separation or 14 streamers x 8,000m x 50m, depending on Petrobras' subsurface imaging requirements for each survey area.
According to Mike Edwards, PGS' Marine VP South America, "PGS continues to show its long term commitment to Brazil by offering its most recent ultra-high capacity vessel for this exciting, long term Petrobras campaign. The Ramform Sovereign will reduce the data acquisition time required by standard configurations. This will decrease Petrobras' commercial exposure and enable them to begin interpreting the final product much, much sooner than previously expected."
"PGS has shown tremendous commitment to Brazil. By offering the latest Ramform technology PGS and Petrobras will be able to take yet another step in our ongoing technological cooperation. The Ramform Sovereign is a superb choice from business and technical perspectives as she is the most advanced seismic vessel available in the industry today," quoted Mario Carminatti, head of Petrobras' Exploration Department.
Source: PGS

••• 05.05.08  Lansdowne Oil & Gas plc, the Dublin-based exploration company, announced that a 2D seismic acquisition program has commenced over recently awarded License 5/08, in the Celtic Sea, offshore Ireland.
Standard Exploration License 5/08 was awarded last month to Lansdowne's recently acquired wholly-owned subsidiary Milesian Oil & Gas Limited ("Milesian"). Standard Exploration License 5/08 covers an area of 449 sq kms over parts of blocks 47/25, 48/21, and 48/22. The blocks are located 30 kms from the coastline, in water depths of approximately 100 meters.
The Norwegian based company, Wavefield Inseis ASA, is carrying out the survey on behalf of Milesian/Lansdowne using the M/V Malene Ostervold, which sailed from Cork on 29 April 2008 and commenced seismic acquisition at 15.00 Hours on 30 April 2008. The 2D seismic survey of approximately 485 kms will be acquired over the Amergin and Eremon structures that have been mapped from existing seismic data. Amergin has been independently verified as having best case potentially recoverable prospective resources of 63 million barrels of oil equivalent ("MMBOE").
Standard Exploration License 5/08 is valid for a period of six years (in two three year phases) during which Milesian is required to drill an exploration well and to complete the acquisition of 300 kms of new seismic data within the first three year phase. The ongoing acquisition of seismic data will fulfil the latter obligation. Under the terms of the license, on 31 March 2011 Milesian is required to surrender 50 per cent. of the license area.
Steve Boldy, Chief Executive of Lansdowne, commented, "We are pleased that the seismic survey has commenced so quickly after the license award and look forward to working with Wavefield Inseis on this program, which we expect to better define the large structures we have identified upon License 5/08."
Source: Lansdowne Oil & Gas

••• 05.05.08  Converteam powers Shtokman rigs.
Vyborg and Samsung have chosen Converteam to carry out a multi-million dollar order to equip drill rigs for the giant Shtokman project in the Barents Sea offshore Russia.
The company has been picked to supply power optimisation solutions for two offshore semi-submersible drilling rigs from Vyborg Shipyard in Russia and Samsung Heavy Industries in Korea.
The company will provide power, propulsion, distribution, vessel automation and thruster assisted mooring (POSMOOR-ATA) systems to the first two CS-50 ice class rigs for the Shtokman gas field.
Andy Cooper, Offshore and Merchant Business Director for Converteam said: "The success of the two rigs will mark the long term commitment and dedication of Converteam to the Shtokman project. Converteam’s global project management skills are implemented throughout the project with contribution from our teams in Germany, Korea, Russia and the UK."
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 04.05.08  Orient Explorer starts Blackwood seismic.
PGS Australia seismic vessel M/V Orient Explorer started work on a 3-D seismic sweep over MEO Australia Ltd.'s Blackwood discovery in NT/P68 permit. The vessel is expected to complete the 380-square-kilometre (147-sq-mile) 3-D seismic survey in about 25 days. The seismic sweep is designed to improve depth conversion and mapping of the Blackwood gas find to facilitate a further appraisal drilling campaign.
Blackwood-1 intersected a 49-metre (161-ft) gross gas column after being drilled to a measured depth of 3,225 metres (10,581 ft) by Seadrill jackup West Atlas. MEO is banking on the commerciality of the Blackwood find to support the development of the Tassie Shoal Methanol project.
MEO operates NA/P68 with 90 percent interest split evenly between two of its subsidiaries. A Petrofac Ltd. subsidiary holds the remaining 10 percent interest.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 02.05.08  ODIM signs up for Fugro job.
ODIM signed a contract with seismic specialist Fugro Geoteam for deliveries of handling equipment worth some US$10 million. To be used for 3-D seismic surveys, the equipment represents the first part of the package and will be installed on Geo Coral, the customer's third newbuilding. The vessel will be delivered from the same yard as the first two ships in the series, Geo Celtic and Geo Caribbean.
As with the earlier deliveries, the equipment being supplied by ODIM will be electrically driven. Deliveries are due to begin in the third quarter of 2009.
Source: ODIM

••• 02.05.08  SCAN chooses Paradigm for new vessel.
SCAN Geophysical has selected Dutch company Paradigm's seismic processing and imaging software for use on SCAN's latest 3-D vessel M/V SCAN Stigandi.
SCAN will use Paradigm Focus software for interactive seismic data processing and to generate 2-D and 3-D images of the subsurface. Paradigm GeoDepth software will be used to construct 3-D velocity and depth model types from pre-processed seismic data.
At the 2008 AAPG Conference in San Antonio, Senior Vice President and COO of SCAN Stephane Touche said, "SCAN will imminently be releasing its latest 3-D vessel, the M/V SCAN Stigandi, that will be equipped with Paradigm technology."
"This will ensure high acquisition quality and help us achieve our goal to become industry leaders with the most advanced technical capabilities available."
M/V SCAN Stigandi has been contracted to acquire seismic data in the Caribbean for PetroVietnam.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 02.05.08  Shark attack holds up OMV NZ seismic trawl.
A shark attack has reportedly held up OMV New Zealand's seismic trawl in New Zealand's Great South Basin. One of the marine predators snapped off a cable towing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of gear from a seismic vessel working for OMV NZ in the area last week, according to the New Zealand Petroleum Association (NZPA). The gear was subsequently retrieved by a following vessel.
The NZPA report did not identify the seismic vessel, but it had reportedly acquired 14,000 kilometres (8,699 miles) of line data prior to the accident. However, OMV NZ is understood to have chartered Shanghai Offshore Petroleum Geophysical Corp.'s seismic vessel Discoverer II to complete a 16,000 kilometre (9,942 -mile) 2-D seismic survey in Great South Basin permits PEP 50119, 50120 and 50121 since last November.
OMV NZ could not be reached for further comment.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 30.04.08  SCAN Geophysical ASA has received confirmation and a Letter of Intent from PetroVietnam Exploration Production Corporation for its new ice class, four-streamer, dual purpose vessel, the M/V SCAN Stigandi.
Tihe vessel is scheduled to acquire approximately 4,000 km of 2D data for PetroVietnam in the Caribbean region, with mobilization towards the end of May / beginning of June 2008.
The M/V SCAN Stigandi was outfitted by Irving Shipbuilding in Halifax, Canada, and scheduled for release from the shipyard in time for this survey. This modern seismic vessel is equipped to handle four streamers for 3D applications and long-offset, large source configurations for 2D surveys worldwide.
"SCAN is especially pleased to make this announcement because it is a double first for the company" said Kjell Karlsson, vice president of sales and marketing. "This will be the first contract for the new M/V SCAN Stigandi and it will be the first job for this client," he explained.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 30.04.08  SeaBird first contract award for SeaBed operations.
SeaBird has received a letter of award from Total E&P Angola for an ocean bottom nodes seismic acquisition survey in Angola. The concessionaire of Block 17 is Sonangol. TotalFinaElf is the operator with a 40% interest in Block 17 along with Esso Exploration Angola (Block 17) Limited (20 %), BP EXPLORATION (Angola) Limited (16.67%), Statoil Angola Block 17 AS (13.33%) and Norsk Hydro (10%). Including mobilization and demobilization the survey is expected to take around 4 months, and the total contract value for the survey will be in the region of US$ 25 million. The survey will be done at around 1,300 meters water depth.
SeaBird took delivery of the vessel Hugin Explorer in January 2008 and is now in the final stages of the conversion to a state-of-the-art node vessel for our SeaBed operations. Currently, SeaBird expects to commence operations after mobilisation to Angola in early Q3.
SeaBird Chairman and CEO, Tim Isden, stated "This letter of award represents a first major recognition from oil companies for our SeaBed operations and provides our first contract in the high end of the seismic industry where we see great potential for the future in reservoir imaging and 4C / 4D applications . We are extremely happy to reach this milestone and to have Total as our contractual partner in our first survey using our autonomous node acquisition system in deepwater and congested areas."
Source: SeaBird

••• 30.04.08  TGS Launches New Series of Greenland Exploratory Surveys.
Multiple data types to be acquired on both East and West coasts in 2008.
TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company has started the 2008 Greenland data acquisition program which will add 138,000 kilometers of aeromagnetic and aerogravity data and 8,300 kilometers of 2D seismic data to its Greenland database.
The two aeromag/aerogravity projects are located In the Labrador Sea/Ungava Basin (80, 000 kilometers) and offshore northeast Greenland (58,000 kilometers) respectively. Both surveys will be processed by TGS in Asker and will be available to industry in the fourth quarter of 2008.
The 2D seismic program in Baffin Bay will commence early third quarter 2008. The program will infill the existing 60 x 60 kilometer grid acquired by TGS in 2007. Combined, the two seismic programs will provide an important grid of modern data that can be utilized by E&P companies to prepare for future license rounds planned for the area. The data will be processed by the TGS Imaging Services group located in Bedford, England and will be delivered to clients by the end of 2008.

••• 28.04.08  Hess Libya Awards Seismic Contract to SCAN.
SCAN Geophysical ASA has confirmed receipt of a contract award from Hess Libya Exploration Limited for approximately 4,000 km of 2D marine seismic work off Libya, to be acquired by the high-capacity seismic 2D vessel M/V Geo Searcher.
"We are extremely pleased that Hess chose to award SCAN this important work" said Kjell Karlsson, Vice President of Marketing and Sales for SCAN. "The Geo Searcher is being mobilized from a previous work location off Pakistan where the vessel successfully completed a large 2D program for another super major oil company. SCAN expects to begin the Hess work during the next few days" he added.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 25.04.08  Shtokman Development decision expected in 2009, FEED awarded.
NORWAY/RUSSIA: A final development decision for the Shtokman field is expected by 2009, according to Benedict Henriksen of StatoilHydro at a presentation on April 24 in Hammerfest, Norway, hosted by the organizers of the Offshore Northern Seas (ONS) trade show.
Henricksen, the company's industrial relations representative, added though that it is possible the particpating companies may not agree on the development decision following front-end engineering design (FEED) work.
Shtokman Development Company, the operator, recently awarded FEED contracts to three companies. Technip will cover FEED work for the onshore LNG facility; DORIS Engineering will handle offshore platform and templates, and JP Kenny the trunkline to shore.
Though no official decision on what type of field development concept will be chosen for this so-called "mother of all projects," the preliminary design includes multiple subsea wellheads, booster compression, a SPAR platform with simple processing, and a 46-inch pipeline to shore, possibly in Opasova Bay near Teriberka, Russia. LNG will then be transported to European and U.S. markets.
Excluding the cost of liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, developement of this concept could cost between US$15 billion and US$20 billion.
StatoilHydro estimates the field, containing around 3.8 Tcm (134.2 Tcf) of natural gas, could produce around 90 Bcm (3.2 Tcf) of gas in 2028. Pipe gas from Shtokman field could be delivered as early as 2013, and LNG by 2014.
The Shtokman field, where an initial discovery was made in 1988, lies in 1,148 feet (350 m) of water in the Russian sector of the Barents Sea. Partners in Shtokman development company include Gazprom, Total, and StatoilHydro with 51 percent, 25 percent, and 24 percent respective interests.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 24.04.08  Schlumberger launches wireless internet for offshore rigs.
Schlumberger and BT have launched the world's first public wireless broadband service for offshore and remote oil and gas drilling rigs and production platform, allowing offshore oil workers access to e-mail, instant messaging and other internet services.
The service was installed for a three month trial by Schlumberger Information Solutions on the Dolphin Drilling semisubmersible Byford Dolphin, which is drilling for CNR International in the North Sea. Wireless connectivity is provided over the rig's main satellite rig, and allows over 100 workers to use wireless enabled laptops and PDAs to access the internet.
Schlumberger will roll out the service globally to other rigs and platforms. Workers wanting to use the service will buy vouchers onboard or subscribe to the service online.
Source: Schlumberger

••• 23.04.08  Deep Water Gunashli begins production in Caspian.
The Azerbaijan International Operating Company (AIOC) has started oil production from the Deep Water Gunashli (DWG) complex, completing the third phase of development of the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli field in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea.
The DWG complex is located in water depths of 175 meters (574 ft) on the eastern side of the Gunashli field. The complex includes two platforms, a drilling and production platform bridge linked to a water injection and gas compression platform.
Production will increase throughout the year as other wells are brought onstream, prior to the commencement of platform drilling. Eventually the DWG complex will produce 320,000 b/d. The Azeri-Chirag Gunashli field will produce over 1 million b/d.
Partners in the AIOC who participate in the field include operator BP with 34.1 percent interest, Chevron with 10.2 percent, SOCAR with 10 percent, INPEX with 10 percent, StatoilHydro with 8.6 percent, ExxonMobil with eight percent, TPAO with 6.8 percent, Devon with 5.6 percent, ITOCHU with 3.9 percent and Hess with 2.7 percent
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 23.04.08  Pacific Titan combs Bass Basin for 3D Oil.
CGGVeritas seismic vessel M/V Pacific Titan recently started work on a 2,200-kilometre (1,367-mile) 2-D survey in the southern part of 3D Oil's Bass Basin permit T/41P. The survey, which is expected to take about 20 days to complete, is aimed at maturing four main leads including Dalrymple, a tilted fault block trap, identified from reprocessed data of a 1,500-kilometre (932-mile) 2-D survey completed in 1990.
T/41P covers an area of about 2,805 square kilometres (1,083 sq miles) in less than 90 metres (295 ft) of water. 3D Oil is the operator and 100 per cent owner of T/41P permit.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 23.04.08  Norway takes on logistics in Murmansk Oblast.
The two Norwegian state-owned enterprises Innovation Norway and SIVA have jointly bought a strategic logistics centre near the Murmashi airport of Murmansk.
The new centre will help facilitate Norwegian business in Northwest Russia, the two companies say, in a press release.
The investment has been made through the company Technopark Nor AS, a joint enterprise of Innovation Norway and SIVA, a press release from Innovation Norway reads.
"A developed logistics and business centre could give Norwegian supply companies competition advantages with regard to sales of high-tech products to for example the oil and gas industry in Northwest Russia", the press release adds.
The 50,000 square meter centre has a terminal for road, railway and air cargo transport. The centre will be run in close cooperation with local authorities, as well as with the Murmansk regional administration.
Source: MarineNorway

••• 22.04.08  Electromagnetic Geoservices wins StatoilHydro contract for Barents Sea work.
Electromagnetic Geoservices ASA (EMGS) has been awarded a contract by StatoilHydro to determine the hydrocarbon potential of exploration prospects in the Barents Sea using seabed-logging technology.
The contract is worth approximately USD 5 million and starts at the end of April.
Terje Eidesmo, EMGS president and chief executive officer, said: "This contract kicks off what appears to be a promising summer season, and I am happy we have got off to such a good start with an important repeat customer like StatoilHydro."
Source: EMGS

••• 22.04.08  Australia has extended its continental shelf under an agreement with the United Nations.
"I am pleased to announce that Australia, the largest island in the world, has just been dramatically increased in size," Resources Minister Martin Ferguson told reporters in Canberra Monday.
Ferguson said Australia had explored its entitlements to extend the continental shelf.
The UN had found that Australia's territory should be extended by 2.5 million square kilometres, he said.
Ferguson could not put a figure on the potential oil and gas reserves contained in the areas.
"This is potentially a bonanza. We have got unknown capacity up there," he added.
Source: Rigzone/Xinhua News Agency

••• 21.04.08  Ulstein posts excellent profit results.
The Group had NOK 1.97 billion in turnover and an operating profit of NOK 194 million, the best cumulative profit result since 1999.
In recent years the Ulstein Group has spent a great deal of time developing new products and work processes. In 2007 the Group delivered comprehensive design and equipment packages to shipowners in Spain, China and Dubai. It also built three ships, one of which, the Normand Seven, was named "Ship of the Year" for 2007.
Source: MarineNorway

••• 18.04.08  Aker boss hopes for Shtokman work.
Aker Solutions boss Simen Lieungh is confident about winning work from the Shtokman development after being involved in concept planning.
After confirming Aker Solutions – the new name for the former Aker Kvaerner contract group – had been involved in preliminary planning for the giant Barents Sea gas development, Lieungh indicated his company is keen on bidding for the expected engineering procurement and construction work which is yet to be awarded for the US $15 Bn first project phase.
"This year there will be a lot of solutions done on studies for Shtokman, After that, more should happen but I don’t know when the EPCs will go out," Lieungh told Reuters in an interview reported in the online edition of the Guardian newspaper in the UK.
"I don't think many others have as much experience and background as we do. We are in a good position," Lieungh was quoted as saying.
So far three companies - Doris Engineering and Technip in France and JP Kenny in the UK - have been awarded contracts for Shtokman development work with Russian partners.
Technip is responsible for engineering an onshore gas reception terminal and LNG plant, Doris is working on platform concepts, and JP Kenny is carrying out Front End Engineering and Design for an offshore export line to shore.
A decision on a design for an offshore platform for Shtokman is due in the third quarter this year.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 18.04.08  Wavefield Inseis today announced that they have been awarded the first 3D contract for Geowave Endeavour.
The client, BG Norge Ltd, is already currently utilizing the Wavefield Inseis vessel M/V Geowave Master, as previously announced.
The additional 3D contract for the Geowave Endeavour provides the vessel with full backlog until the end of the 2008 North Sea season.
The new purpose built 16 streamer vessel M/V Geowave Endeavour will be delivered from the Fosen Yard in Norway at the end of June this year and after sea-trails go straight onto the 3D survey in the North Sea.
"Our new flagship is scheduled to be delivered within our predicted time-frame in order to take advantage of the 2008 North Sea season", stated CEO Atle Jacobsen. "The Endeavour is one of the world`s largest and most powerful 3D vessels. We are delighted that its first project is for a current client, the oil and gas major BG Norge."
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 18.04.08  LARGEO and ION form seismic data alliance.
ION Geophysical has allied with Moscow-based seismic data processing company LARGEO to provide imaging services for seismic data acquired in the Russian market. The alliance is known as LARGEO-ION.
The LARGEO-ION Imaging Center in Moscow will deliver seismic data processing services, with a focus on data acquired in marine environments. The two companies plan to provide pre-stack depth and time migration, reverse time migration, azimuthal velocity analysis, full-wave imaging, velocity modeling and data conditioning. The center may later expand to process data acquired onshore.
LARGEO General Manager Alexandre Yakolev said, "The alliance between our two companies will create one of the most powerful seismic data processing centers in Russia. We believe LARGEO-ION will be capable of delivering the highest quality seismic images and will allow our E&P customers to rapidly take advantage of the latest data processing innovations."
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 18.04.08  GGS spins off survey business.
Consolidation in the oilfield survey business appeared to stop Thursday, with the "spin-off" of its GGS’s seismic business into a new Specturm ASA understood to be worth MNOK 275 ($55.5 million).
The new London-based businss will acquire and process data. GGS will then "focus on building and developing its tender-rig business."
Multi client surveys of offshore Iran will "main with GGS", the company said, but all other industry-backed survey data and the GGC Atlantic will go to Spectrum.
The move follows a year of survey-outfit consolidation which recently chilled with the called off merger of rivals and now GGS' move.
Source: Scandoil

••• 17.04.08  Wavefield Inseis Secures Additional Seismic Vessel Capacity.
Wavefield Inseis ASA has signed an agreement with Shanghai Offshore Petroleum Geophysical Corporation (SOPGC) for a one and a half year Bare-Boat Charter of the fully equipped 2D/source vessel Discoverer 2 with two single year extension options.
The new charter will commence in June 2008 and Wavefield Inseis has already secured several months 2D backlog for the vessel. The new contracts are additions to the previously announced vessel backlog figures. The company has previous experience chartering the M/V Discoverer 2, and with the strong seismic market and a good operational track record, it expects the vessel to make a good financial contribution in its 2D seismic segment during the charter period.
"We are extremely pleased to be able to add this vessel to our fleet," said Atle Jacobsen, CEO of Wavefield Inseis. "The Discoverer 2 has already proved that it's a high performance 2D vessel and the charter will allow us immediately to deploy additional capacity into the very strong 2D market without any additional CAPEX investments. The increase of the 2D fleet from 3 to 4 vessels will also improve the overall 2D fleet utilisation and provide improved access to source vessels for our own permanent OBC systems and wide-azimuth surveys."
The Discoverer 2 was built in 1993 and was converted into a seismic 2D/source vessel in 1996. The vessel joins the rest of Wavefield Inseis's fleet of 5 high capacity 3D vessels and 3 2D/source vessels, bringing the total fleet up to 9 vessels.
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 17.04.08  Aral Sea members to mobilize an extra seismic crew.
In order to ensure the effective implementation of a seismic survey program in the Uzbekistan sector of the Aral Sea the members of the international consortium made a decision on mobilization of an extra seismic crew to the contract area.
New seismic crew will focus on investigations in the transit area. The scope of studies has significantly increased due to the change of depths in the eastern part of the offshore area of the Aral Sea as compared to design data. In the areas, where water depth does not exceed 2 meters, a well drilling technology will be applied instead of offshore seismic in order to implement shooting operations to stimulate elastic vibrations.
About 700 km of seismic profiles have been processed since September 2007, which was the starting date of field studies. It is almost one third of the work program, which is expected to be completed in the end of the year.
PSA on Aral project was signed on August 30, 2006 by the Government of Republic of Uzbekistan and the consortium of investors comprised of National Holding Company Uzbekneftegaz, LUKOIL Overseas, CNPC International (China), Korea National Oil Corporation (Korea) and Petronas Carigali Overseas (Malaysia). The project operator is Aral Sea Operating Company (legal entity of the Republic of Uzbekistan), PetroAlliance, the Russian company, is acting as the main contractor for seismic survey.
Source: Scandoil

••• 17.04.08  Wavefield Inseis announced today that the Company`s seismic vessel operation was effected by contract re-allocations and vessel engine repair work in the quarter.
Further, Wave confirms that the two new 3D vessels are on track for delivery from yard in end of Q2 and end of Q3 respectively.
The originally planned Gulf of Mexico Wide Azimuth 3D survey that was scheduled to commence in end December and continue throughout April, was terminated for various reasons.
Due to the termination, 4 dedicated vessels, Geowave Master, Geowave Commander, Bergen Surveyor and Akademik Shatskiy, had to be deployed on alternative work on short notice. Consequently, the secured terms were not optimal and locations were not ideal for the time of year.
In January, the vessel owner of Geowave Master requested the vessel in for engine repair work, which resulted in 3 weeks lost production time.
Based on client`s request, the Geowave Commander mobilized in end of first quarter for the North Sea in their third consecutive year of operation for Statoil, Norway. The reduced revenue related to the vessel transit in end of first quarter, will be recovered through higher utilization and vessel revenue in second quarter.
Source: Wavefield Inseis

••• 16.04.08  Aban Offshore scores $34 million contract for Murmanskaya.
India offshore drilling contractor Aban Offshore has received a US$34 million contract for the deployment of its jackup Murmanskaya from Exxon Neftegas. The rig will be deployed offshore Russia for 160 days for a two well program. The deployment will commence in direct continuation of the rig's present contract, which begins in June.
Murmanskaya will be transported from its current location in China by Dockwise Shipping. Murmanskaya was drilling in South China Sea Block 22/12 for Roc Oil, which decided not to drill a third well on the block.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 16.04.08  NWest Launches W. Newfoundland's 1st Offshore 3D Seismic Project.
NWest Energy Inc. has signed a contract with Calgary-based Geophysical Service Inc. for the acquisition of 3D seismic data over approximately 900 square kilometers off Western Newfoundland. The data is to be collected over a six to eight week period in the third quarter, 2008, pending final approval of the Environmental Assessment by the Canada-Newfoundland Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (CNLOPB).
The NWest program marks the first time 3D seismic data will be acquired and analyzed in the emerging Western Newfoundland offshore oil play. NWest has identified 11 highgraded targets with a total potential of 3.8 billion barrels within its exploration licence area.
The 3D seismic program will cover several stacked targets, ranging from 300 million to 500 million barrel oil potential. Targets have been identified through detailed analysis of existing 2D seismic data and other geological data.
Following a successful 3D seismic program, NWest plans to drill its first well in 2009.
Geophysical Service will use its ship GSI Admiral for the data acquisition.
Source: Rigzone/NWest Energy

••• 15.04.08  Rolls-Royce design selected for Polar research vessel.
Rolls-Royce has been selected to design a research vessel to carry out environmental research at both the North and South Poles.
The vessel will be outfitted to cover a wide range of marine research operations, such as monitoring fishing stocks, meteorological studies, sea floor sampling and mapping.
The NVC 395 POLAR ship will be designed for operations in waters covered by ice up to one metre thick and is classified to Polar 10 ice class.
The contract is with the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research, but all Norwegian research institutes involved in polar research will be involved in both development and use of the vessel.
Einar Vegsund, Rolls-Royce Design Manager, said: "The Institute has sought creativity in our design and we have drawn on our expertise in such ships to deliver a solution for a technology-intensive vessel that can operate in the harshest environments."
Rolls-Royce will draw on a heritage of ship design which now totals more than 800 ships either built or on order. These include a number of Arctic patrol vessels operated by Danish and Norwegian navies and Icelandic coastguard.
The Norwegian Institute of Marine Research and the Norwegian Polar Institute act as consultant to Norwegian authorities, contributing to the maintenance of administration standards in Norwegian waters and polar areas to ensure they remain some of the best-preserved wilderness areas in the world.
Source: Offshore Shipping Online

••• 14.04.08  Big gas find from StatoilHydro off Norway.
StatoilHydro has hit a possible 52 Bcf recoverable gas find from a wildcat well on production licence 263, off Norway.
Drilled by Seadrill semisubmersible West Alpha, well 6507/11-9 on the Natalia prospect is 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) northwest of Midgard, which is part of the Asgard field in the Norwegian Sea.
The purpose of the well was to prove petroleum in Middle Jurassic reservoir rocks. Formation-testing was not carried out but extensive data collection and sampling were.
Licensees in 263, which are StatoilHydro with 70 percent and Bayerngas Norge with 30 percent, will now consider producing the discovery in conjunction with the Asgard field.
The well, drilled to a vertical depth of 3,040 metres (9,973 ft) below the sea surface, was concluded in rocks from the Lower Jurassic and was the third exploration well in production licence 263, which was awarded in the 16th licensing round.
The water depth at the site is 299 metres (980 ft). The well will now be permanently plugged and abandoned. West Alpha will now proceed to production licence 348 in the Norwegian Sea to drill wildcat wells 6407/8-4 S and A, operated by StatoilHydro.
Source: Scandoil

••• 14.04.08  C-Nav® provides two independent GNSS (DGPS) services.
C-Nav® is now providing a second high-accuracy DGPS (dGNSS) service. C-Nav® Net-1 was the first worldwide Precise Point Positioning (P3) service and has set the benchmark in dGNSS service since Y2K.
Now C-Nav® Net-2 provides the same level of service with extreme redundancy built into its network. An independent position calculated from C-Nav® Net-2 is just as accurate and stable as everyone has come to expect for C-Nav® Net-1. When Net-1 & Net-2 are used together, all single points of failure are eliminated which doubles the users confidence without doubling the cost.
A wide range of software and QC tools including C-NaviGator®, C-Monitor, and C-Setup make C-Nav® easy to operate. Customer support is provided through C-Nav® offices in the USA, Mexico, Brazil, Angola, South Africa, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. The support network continues to expand with dealers and distributors operating worldwide.
Source: C & C Technologies

••• 11.04.08  TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company (TGS) announced today that it has completed acquisition of two new multi-client programs in Somaliland.
Offshore, TGS has acquired approximately 5,100 kilometers of 2D seismic, gravity, and magnetic data covering both shallow and deep water areas. Processing and interpretation of the data should be available to clients by the third quarter of 2008.
Onshore, TGS has acquired approximately 34,000 kilometers of high resolution aeromagnetic data covering all known Somaliland petroleum basins. The aeromagnetic data is currently in processing and should be available to clients by mid-2008. Both programs have been acquired in cooperation with the Ministry of Water and Natural Resources and are marketed exclusively by TGS.
The Somaliland government has announced its intent to conduct an open bid round later in the year after the data become available. The seismic and aeromagnetic programs being acquired by TGS will provide data needed to define the principle structural elements of the area and allow for the development of leads, plays, and structural highs for further investigation. The area is geologically analogous to Yemen where several oil fields have been discovered to date.
Both programs are supported by industry prefunding.

••• 11.04.08  West Siberian completes merger.
West Siberian Resources (WSR) has completed its merger with Alliance Oil and says it will invest US $403 million on operations in Russia and Kazakhstan during 2008.
Total oil production during the year is set to reach 18.6 million bbl and WSR also expects to refine 24.5 million barrels of oil in 2008.
The merged group has pro forma revenues amounting to nearly $2 billion and EBITDA of $350 million, in 2007. The company said it also has proved and probable oil reserves of 489 million bbl and a stable supply of crude oil with production of close to 45,000 b/d.
"The completed merger has created a leading independent, fully integrated oil company with operations in Russia and Kazakhstan, set to benefit from growth opportunities through the whole oil industry value chain. This platform will provide the basis for improved margins, higher quality earnings and cash flows, and further growth for WSR", said Maxim Barski, Managing Director of WSR.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 10.04.08  Norwegian oil production was somewhat lower in February than last year, while natural gas production increased, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) said Wednesday.
A total of 20.6 million standard cubic meters of oil equivalents (Sm3 o.e.) were produced, one million higher than February 2007.
Oil production in February only reached 9.7 million cubic meters, one million less than the same month in 2007, and 9.2 million Sm3 o.e. of natural gas were produced, 1.9 million more than last year.
So far this year the total production is about 42.3 million Sm3 o.e., one million higher than in the same period last year, thanks to more gas production.
Norway is the world's third-largest oil exporter after Saudi Arabia and Russia. Last year, it produced 237.8 million cubic meters of oil equivalent.
Source: NPD

••• 08.04.08  GSI Pacific ready to begin seismic acquisition offshore Guinea.
Seismic acquisition vessel GSI Pacific has arrived in the port city of Conakry, Republic of Guinea, to begin the acquisition of new 2-D seismic data for Hyperdynamics Corp. GSI Pacific will acquire data along the emerging transform margin play running through Hyperdynamics' 31,000 square mile (80,289 sq km) concession offshore Guinea. The concession contains one of the largest slope shelf areas in West Africa, and the data acquired here will be used to finalize subsequently acquired 3-D grids.
Hyperdynamics Executive Vice President of Exploration and Production James R. Spear traveled to Guinea to meet with GSI Pacific and ensure that the required scientific equipment and navigational configurations were onboard. While in Guinea, Spear and Famourou Kourouma, the company's vice president of Guinea affairs, established business relations with logistics and shipping firm Getma Guinea. The firm will provide all in-country logistics, port services and other support for Hyperdynamics' Guinea operations.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 08.04.08  ODIM has today secured a contact worth just over NOK 425 million from an international seismic survey company.
The order covers automated handling solutions for a total of six new three-dimensional seismic survey vessels and options for two additional ships. Delivery is scheduled from 2009.
"This is the largest order we have ever won", says Idar Hatloy, vice president for seismic at ODIM. "It confirms our strong position in the market for automated handling solutions for seismic survey vessels, segment where we are still seeing good activity."
Source: ODIM

••• 08.04.08  SCAN Geophysical: Update on delivery of M/V SCAN Stigandi.
The vessel M/V SCAN Stigandi has been converted to a 3D seismic acquisition vessel at the Irving Shipyard in Halifax in Canada. With reference to the stock exchange notice of 20 February 2008, the vessel was expected to be delivered to the vessel owner on 15 March 2008.
Neptune Offshore AS, who supervises the upgrade on behalf of the owner Neptune Seismic AS, has informed that the owner has taken delivery of work completed on 31 March 2008 when the vessel was out of dock. SCAN is further informed that unexpected damages to the main gear and the shaft generator have occurred.
Complete overhauls need to be done, whilst completing other work onboard the vessel. Once the vessel has completed marine trials, the vessel will undergo final testing of the seismic systems before being ready for seismic operations.
As a consequence, the commencement of seismic contractual mobilization is expected to be the end of May, which is one month later than previous expectation.
Source: SCAN Geophysical

••• 08.04.08  Bergen Oilfield Services (BOS) has recently been awarded a contract by Lundin to undertake a 3D seismic survey in the UK sector.
The project will utilise BOS Arctic, BOS's six streamer 3D vessel, to undertake approximately 250 square kilometres of survey during the 2008 European summer.
Jan Sovik, Executive VP Marketing and Sales said he was pleased with the contract win and expected 2008 to be an extraordinary year for BOS.
"BOS is looking forward to working with Lundin on this project. The announcement of this contract win is a fantastic start to the first quarter of 2008 and is great news for the first season of operation for our 3D vessel BOS Arctic," he said.
"Since we started marketing ourselves toward the end of 2007 we have had a positive response from the market and this is only the beginning for us. "As we slowly become prequalified around the world, we anticipate the number of contracts to grow exponentially as we strive to become a driving force in the offshore seismic data acquisition and processing market.
"We believe that what we are offering is something a little different. We own the whole value chain from steel to seismic data. In short, we refurbish and or build these seismic vessels from steel, shoot the seismic and process the data ourselves; something that has not been traditionally focused on within the market.
"BOS takes on the risk to ensure that the project runs smoothly and afterwards the client gets good quality data in a form that they can read and analyse.
"It is a big statement to say that we have attained the right mix of client focus, technology and skilled employees to deliver what the market has been waiting for, but it is something that we maintain and can defend."
Source: BOS

••• 08.04.08  Australian Gov't Releases 35 Offshore Areas For Oil Exploration.
The Australian government has put 35 offshore areas for grabs for petroleum exploration, Resources Minister Martin Ferguson announced on Monday.
The released commonwealth areas are located across five basins off the Northern Territory, Western Australia, and the Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands coastlines.
"The Australian government is committed to intensifying the mineral, oil and gas exploration effort and the development of new exploration science and technology," the minister said in a statement.
He said the announcement was a key part of the government's strategy to encourage investment in petroleum exploration.
Bids for 17 of the new areas close on October 9,2008, with the remaining 18 areas closing on April 9, 2009.
"Exploration is fundamental to the future of the resources sector, and the government is committed to working with industry and state and territory governments to maintain our international competitiveness and ensure the long-term growth of this vital Australian industry," Ferguson said.
Source: Rigzone/Xinhua News Agency

••• 07.04.08  New VP for BOS Operations.
Bergen Oilfield Services (BOS) has employed a new Vice President of Operations ahead of the launch of their two vessels BOS Arctic and BOS Atlantic.
Tor Soreide Sivertsen will manage a team of highly professional personnel working onboard our two seismic vessels: BOS Arctic (3D) and BOS Atlantic (2D) with initial operations in Norway and Singapore. This team will grow over the coming months as crew are employed to work onboard BOS Angler and further vessels, plus the planned extension of operations into the Americas.
Tor Soreide Sivertsen said that his initial focus would be on streamlining operations to deliver the best result for the growing number of BOS clients.
"My focus is in establishing a team that offers the client a predictable and efficient service while placing a high priority on personnel, equipment and the environment," he said.
"The BOS employees that have already been recruited have extensive experience in the seismic field and we have invested heavily in the best equipment and systems to secure excellent seismic data for our clients."
BOS's first vessel will have its official name unveiling during May. BOS's 2D vessel, originally known as Oceanic Princess, will be officially inducted into the BOS fleet and will be given the name BOS Atlantic.
Source: BOS

••• 04.04.08  PGS announced that its seismic 3D vessel fleet used approximately 91% of its total time to acquire marine contract and multi-client seismic in the first quarter of 2008.
Petroleum Geo-Services has seen its vessel utilization rate jump to 91 percent in the first quarter from 69 percent in the period prior. The Oslo-based seismic player saw a utilization rate of 89 percent in the the same quarter of 2007.
Contract seismic work made up 69 percent of PGS's work, while multi-client seismic was 22 percent and streaming nine percent. This compared respectively to 57 percent, 32 percent and five percent in 2007, when yard made up the remaining six percent of towed capacity.
Ramform Soveriegn, delivered in mid-March is not part of the first quarter 2008 figures. It will be included from April 1. Ramform Victory is also excluded from the statistics, having been delivered to the Japanese Ministry of EconomyTrade and Industry last October.
A US$65 million accounting gain is expected be recorded in the first quarter results.
Source: PGS

••• 04.04.08  Measures could bring end of seismic, fishing rows.
Rows between seismic companies and fishermen on the Norwegian Continental Shelf could soon be a thing of the past. A working group of representatives from both industries have agreed to a string of proposals that should head off any conflict in the future. The measures include a 10-working-day deadline for any changes to planned seismic searches and an online map of areas where seismic is or will be carried out. A fishery expert could also be assigned to seismic survey vessels as a link to the the fishing fleet.
The moves were put on the table by the Directorate of Fisheries and the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) in a report to the heads of the two directorates. An NPD spokesman said, "The report emphasises the importance of good coexistence in the ocean regions, in spite of increased activity in the petroleum sector along with the perception of increasing conflict of interest."
The working group agreed that fishing vessels carrying out active fishing take precedence ahead of other vessels that come to the fishing or harvesting field. The NPD spokesman said, "This also applies to seismic survey vessels, even if they have permission to carry out seismic surveys in the same area. The same precedence cannot be demanded if the fishing vessel arrives at a harvesting field where seismic surveys are already underway.
"The fishery industry has complained that seismic data is acquired over and over again in the same area. However, the working group has no basis on which to claim that various licensees acquire the same lines multiple times, but the NPD will examine this in more detail."
The working group recommends that the same tracking requirements that apply to fishing vessels should also apply to seismic survey vessels. There must be a clarification of whether the use of satellite tracking can be required for seismic survey vessels, including vessels registered abroad.
The head of the Directorate of Fisheries and the NPD's director general will meet sometime during the spring to discuss the measures proposed in the report, as well as how they should be followed up.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 03.04.08  NPD sets seismic dates.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) will begin the acquisition of 2D seismic data in Nordland VII outside of Lofoten and Vesterolen in mid-May.
The work will be carried out for the NPD by Bergen Oilfield Services with the S/V BOS Atlantic.
The NPD has chartered the vessel until 14 September 2008 and it will also be used to acquire 3D seismic this summer in Troms II – north of Andoya.
The NPD said its goal for this year's seismic season is to acquire as much data as possible without conflicting with fishery activities in the area.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 03.04.08  Norway’s oil fund loses $20B.
A focus on "active trading" in stocks has caused Norway’s powerful "oil fund", or "overseas pension fund" to lose some NOK115 billion ($22.3 billion) or 12 percent of its value since the New Year.
An article in Norwegian business daily Dagens Naaringsliv cited values in the FTSE-All World, an important benchmark for the fund’s managers, in a front-page story that raised eyebrows in Norway. With oil production falling, the fund is seen by once-poor, now oil-rich Norwegians as providing wealth for future generations.
Likeminded funds exist in Russia’s $100 billion state stabilization fund, which is matched in Azerbaijan and Iran.
Canada’s Alberta has never had an oil fund, a move now seen as a mistake by the oil province’s leadership.
The Norwegian fund is said to have 30 percent of its value invested in United States stocks, where nervous investors seeking refuge in commodities and other financial sector offerings hae caused values to drop by upwards of 20 percent on average before ground was regained.
The oil fund’s next biggest investments, and by default its losses, have been in London stocks, followed by French, Japaense and German stocks.
Source: Scandoil

••• 03.04.08  Barents consent for StatoilHydro.
Consent for a new Barents Sea exploration well has been given to StatoilHydro targeting a prospect called Ververis. StatoilHydro has been given the consent by Norway's Petroleum Safety Authority to operate the well with the Polar Pioneer which is due to drill the 7226/2-1 block well, in PL 395, located to the north of the North Cape (NordKapp) off northern Norway, and 285 km (178 miles) from Bjornoya island.
Drilling is expected to take up to 53 days, in a water depth of 347 m (1,138 ft) commencing in May, after the rig has completed operations on its current commitment on the Tornerose prospect.
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 02.04.08  Elixir Petroleum Limited commences a 3D seismic acquisition programme on Block SL-4, offshore the Republic of Sierra Leone, West Africa (Block SL-4).
As the operator of Block SL-4, Elixir has contracted a leading international seismic acquisition provider to undertake the programme on behalf of the Block SL-4 joint venture. The vessel conducting the survey commenced acquiring data on Block SL-4 on 30 March 2008 and will acquire 1,222 km2 of 3D seismic. This is an enlarged programme to that previously announced, although the terms of the seismic acquisition agreement are consistent with previous advice.
The 3D survey is designed to better define and mature the large number of significant leads and play types identified from 2D seismic data acquired over Block SL-4 in 2003.
It is expected that on a trouble free basis, seismic acquisition activities will be completed and the vessel released by early June 2008. The data acquired will be processed in Europe by the seismic contractor, ahead of detailed interpretation studies by Elixir’s exploration team based in London.
The undertaking of the 3D seismic survey satisfies the agreed minimum work programme for the First Exploration Period under the Petroleum Agreement governing Block SL-4.
The Managing Director of Elixir Petroleum, Andrew Ross, said, "We are delighted to have been able to commence in-field operations so soon after becoming operator of Block SL-4. We are confident that the 3D data set will lead to the generation of high quality, drill ready prospects which should be available for farm-out to drill in the first half of 2009. We look forward to making further releases regarding progress at Block SL-4 in the coming months."
Source: Scandoil

••• 01.04.08  TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Co. is expected to start work by mid-year on a 500-kilometre (311-mile) 2-D seismic survey using Shanghai Offshore Petroleum Geophysical Corp.'s vessel Discoverer II in Discovery Geo (Australia) Corp.'s Taranaki permit PEP 38343 offshore New Zealand.
Discoverer II will take about four to five days to complete the survey covering the Campbell lead off Cape Campbell and other potential leads further east and south, down the Marlborough coast. Processing of the data is now expected to be complete in August, according to Discovery Geo.
Discovery Geo is also planning to begin an exploration drilling programme in Taranaki Basin permit PEP 38479. The chartered jackup, ENSCO 56, is now scheduled to arrive on location in early August to drill on the Awakino South-1 well located in 40 metres (131 ft) of water.
Dr. Bruce Morris, operations manager for Discovery Geo earlier said the Awakino South-1 well will be drilled to about 3,000 metres (9,843 ft) to target a sub-thrust Mangahewa sandstone play, about seven kilometres (4.3 miles) from the coast in Taranaki Basin permit PEP 38479.
ENSCO 56, now on charter to Shell, is working on a six-well programme in Pohokura field offshore New Zealand. The rig will be heading for a brief yard stay before commencing on the drilling assignment with Discovery Geo.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 31.03.08  ConocoPhillips and Karoon Gas acquired at least 1,400 square kilometres (540 sq miles) of 3-D seismic data in the partners' WA-398-P Browse Basin permit off northwestern Australia.
Fugro-Geoteam AS seismic vessel Geo Atlantic on Jan. 10 started work on the Endurance 3-D survey, which involves the acquisition of another 500 square kilometers (193 sq miles) around the permit. The survey is aimed at maturing the prospects for an exploration drilling campaign scheduled for the third quarter of 2008.
ConocoPhillips and Karoon have chartered Transocean semisubmersible Sedco 703 to drill one well in WA-398-P and a well in two other permits each, WA-314-P and WA-315-P. All three wells will be drilled over a 200-day period. The rig charter carries an option to extend for another 25 days. Sedco 703 is expected to arrive in the area in August 2008 after completing a one-year campaign with Woodside Petroleum.
ConocoPhillips owns a 60 percent stake in WA-398-P and a 51 percent stake in WA-314-P and WA-315-P each. Karoon holds 40 percent interest in WA-398-P and a 49 percent stake in WA-314-P and WA-315-P each. The three permit areas lie in 400 to 800 metres (1,312 to 2,324 ft) of water on trend with the Scott Reef/Brecknock gas fields, which are being appraised for development.
Source: ConocoPhillips/Karoon Gas

••• 28.03.08  Technip to design first phase of Shtokman.
The Shtokman Development Co. awarded Technip a lump sum front-end engineering design (FEED) contract for the onshore portion of the first phase of the Shtokman gas project in Russia. The Shtokman gas field is located in the Barents Sea and is one of the world's largest gas condensate deposits with reserves of approximately 134.2 Tcf of gas and 37 million tons of hydrocarbon condensate.
The onshore facilities for Shtokman Phase 1 will be located at a site adjacent to Teriberka, Russia, 75 miles (120 km) east of Murmansk. Phase 1 includes an offshore gas pipeline terminal, a gas treatment plant, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) train with a capacity of 7.5 million tons per year and an export plant for the Russian and European markets.
Technip's operating centers in Paris and Saint Petersburg will execute the contract. The FEED, which is scheduled to be completed by mid-2009, will form the technical basis for the detailed design, procurement and construction contracts that will be awarded later.
In addition to the FEED contract, Technip has been awarded two additional contracts, one to establish a set of project standards and the second to assist Shtokman with the definition of site preparation works.
Shareholders in the Shtokman Development Co. are Sevmorneftegaz, a wholly owned subsidiary of Gazprom, with 51 percent interest, Total with 25 percent interest and StatoilHydro with 24 percent interest.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 27.03.08  PGS Australia's seismic vessel M/V Orient Explorer on April 20 will commence a 350-square-kilometre (135-sq-mile) 3-D survey over the Blackwood structure in the northern region of MEO Australia's NT/P68 permit.
The survey is expected to be completed in 25 days. The seismic sweep is designed to improve depth conversion and mapping of the Blackwood gas find to facilitate a further appraisal drilling campaign.
Blackwood-1 intersected a 49-metre (161-ft) gross gas column after being drilled to a measured depth of 3,225 metres (10,581 ft) by Seadrill jackup West Atlas. MEO is banking on the commerciality of the Blackwood find to support the development of the Tassie Shoal Methanol project.
MEO operates NA/P68 with 90 percent interest split evenly between two of its subsidiaries. A Petrofac Ltd. subsidiary holds the remaining 10 percent interest.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 26.03.08  Schlumberger officially inaugurated the Schlumberger Siberian Training Center, in Tyumen, West Siberia, in the Russian Federation on March 21.
Vladimir Yakushev, governor of the Tyumen Region, and Andrew Gould, chairman and chief executive officer of Schlumberger, officiated at the opening ceremony in front of more than 170 guests drawn from regional government, oil company and Schlumberger representatives.
The new state-of-the-art center has been designed to provide basic and advanced training in the Russian language for Schlumberger field engineers and specialists as well as to offer specialized courses for the Russian oil and gas community. The site covers 150 hectares and is entirely self-sufficient with accommodation for 160 students in custom-designed study-bedroom cottages. Total investment will exceed $100 million. The center is the latest and largest of such centers that Schlumberger is opening around the world.
The center includes classrooms, workshops, fully equipped laboratories and field technical equipment to provide Schlumberger geoscientists, field engineers, field technicians and maintenance engineers from the Russian Federation and Russian-language countries with new technology skills. Training courses will be held in artificial lift, directional drilling, well cementing and stimulation, data services and information solutions as well as in integrated project management. A strong focus will be placed on technologies applicable worldwide, as well as on fit-for-purpose applications for the Russian market.
Construction of the center started in February 2006. The first phase, which included completion of the specialist driver-training facility, opened in January 2007 and the main facility and accommodation blocks opened in February 2008. The training capacity is expected to double over the next year to reach 350 students.
Source: Schlumberger

••• 25.03.08  Scottish owned pipeline engineer JP Kenny has confirmed its FEED contract to work on a new export pipeline for Russia’s Shtokman gas development.
JP Kenny says work will be executed over several phases under a "multi-million" pound contract for Front End Engineering and Design as well as "management of all activities associated with" engineering the pipeline.
The company, owned by Aberdeen-based parent Wood Group revealed today that it had entered an agreement for participation in phase one development of Shtokman back in January.
Gerwyn Williams, managing director of JP Kenny said: "We are very pleased to have won this contract, which adds to our portfolio of cold region engineering projects. The project comprises a 600km (375 mile) 44-inch subsea pipeline from the Shtokman field running south to Murmansk."
Williams said work will be carried out both in London and Norwegian offices, supported by a Russian contractor. He also said a JP Kenny office will be established in St Petersburg, managed by Russian engineers.
Using its “tried and tested solutions” for deepwater pipeline installation, JP Kenny said it will also be responsible for managing interfaces for procurement, planning and compliance with Russian regulations.
Shtokman, which was first discovered in 1988, lies up to 555 km (350 miles) offshore east of Murmansk, and the export pipeline will have to bring production from an arctic sea in a water depth of 350 m (1,150 ft).
Source: Offshore Media Group

••• 24.03.08  AGR supports Kamchatka drilling.
KNOC entered a contract with AGR Group to utilize AGR's riserless mud recovery (RMR) technology to drill two tophole wells off the West Kamchatka peninsula in the Sea of Okhotsk in eastern Russia. AGR said the RMR technology was selected based on its zero discharge capability.
The drilling programme is scheduled to begin in June 2008. KNOC semisubmersible Doo Sung will drill two wells in the Kamchatka field. Rosneft owns 60 percent stake of the Kamchatka oil field, with the KNOC-led South Korean consortium holding the remaining 40 percent interest.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 20.03.08  CGGVeritas seismic vessel M/V Pacific Titan recently completed a 530-kilometre (329-mile) 2-D survey offshore Australia in Tap Oil's Bass Basin permit T/47P.
The survey was completed within five days with no safety or environmental incidents.
Tap expects the the data from the Molson 2-D seismic survey to be ready for interpretation in the third quarter of 2008. The new data will add to the 517-square-kilometre (200-sq-mile) 3-D seismic data gathered by PGS' Pacific Explorer last November. The data will help to mature the drilling leads for a two-well campaign planned using Maersk-managed semisubmersible Kan Tan IV in 2009.
Block T/47P contains the 1970 Cormont-1 oil discovery and numerous leads with up to 40 million barrels of oil in place based on an initial evaluation. The operator was awarded the offshore permit last March. The permit covers about 2,890 square kilometres (1,116 sq miles) in water depths ranging from 50 metres to 100 metres (164 ft to 328 ft) near Origin Energy's Yolla gas field.
The exploration permit carries a minimum work commitment covering the drilling of two exploration wells and the acquisition of 506 square kilometres (195 sq miles) of 3-D seismic data and 511 kilometres (318 miles) of 2-D line seismic data. The work program is expected to cost around A$33 million (US$29 million).
Tap operates the permit with a 40 percent stake. Partners are Singapore Petroleum Co. with 35 percent and Jubilant Energy with 25 percent.
Source: EnergyCurrent

••• 19.03.08  Kongsberg Maritime has taken an order to install its unique K-Log Electronic Logbook onboard the Petroleum Geo-Service (PGS) owned newbuild, Ramform Sovereign, which was christened at Aker Yards, Langsten on 11th March 2008.
As the third generation Ramform vessel, Sovereign, who's first charter will be with StatoilHydro on the Norwegian Continental Shelf is being hailed as the most advanced seismic vessel today, and the technology onboard reflects this.
K-Log will be integrated into a Kongsberg Seatex HMS100 Helideck Monitoring System and a 3rd party IAS system onboard Ramform Sovereign, which demonstrates its integration qualities and its ability to reduce the man hours spent on completing extensive logbook entries. By integrating sensors from various critical sub-systems with K-Log, many logbook entries can be automated and sent to the shore office, which enhances an operator's ability to monitor and control its vessels, in addition to reducing the amount of time that officers have to spend on logging.
As the leader in the field of electronic logbooks, and the only company able to offer multiple Flag State approvals, Kongsberg Maritime is starting to see such systems specified for newbuildings on a regular basis and has reported a significant positive upturn in the number of enquiries it receives from owners and operators regarding K-Log.
"We've been developing electronic logbooks since 2002, with the ultimate goal of replacing paper logbooks," says Stig Wahlstrom, Product Manager for K-Log at Kongsberg Maritime. "The often conservative nature of the maritime industry has meant that the system has slowly become recognised but vessels like Ramform Sovereign and K-Log installations on 6 new LNG's for AP Moller and various other newbuilds shows that the idea of electronic logbooks has matured, which is validation for the amount of development and the belief that our team here has in the system."
Source: Kongsberg Maritime