UK/Ireland 2D seismic survey examines potential new offshore plays

Offshore staff

LONDON – A consortium of GeoPartners, MAGE, Seabird Exploration, and DownUnder GeoSolutions (DUG) has completed a new multi-client 2D seismic survey over waters overlapping the Irish and UK sectors.

This is the first broadband long-offset cross border survey over the region, the partners claim, and involved acquiring 5,124 line km (3,184 mi), mostly over the Irish North Celtic Sea and St Georges Channel.

MAGE’s vessel Nikolay Trubyatchinsky (ex-Polar Explorer) finished the program in September.

The goal of the project is to provide improved regional data over an area attracting increasing interest following the UK’s 28th licensing round awards, and also several new license options on the Irish side. However, much of the area remains unlicensed.

Both the Celtic Sea and UK Western Approaches are largely unexplored at pre-Cretaceous levels and there appears to be potential for prospectivity particularly within the Jurassic and Triassic sequences that few wells to date have penetrated.

There is a proven Liassic source rock: possible reservoirs include the Triassic Sherwood sandstone and Jurassic limestone and sandstone.

Locally, the Carboniferous could provide a gas source from coal measures and a potential oil source from the Bowland shale, as in the Hamilton field offshore northwest England/Wales.

The survey provides well ties to most of the main wells drilled in the area covered, including:

  • UK 106/24-1 which had live oil shows in Mid-Jurassic Bathonian limestones and sandstones
  • IRL 49/9-2 Helvick oil discovery which flowed light oil (44° API) at a cumulative rate of 10,000 b/d from Mid-Jurassic Bathonian limestones and Upper Jurassic sandstones
  • UK 103/1-1 Dragon gas/condensate discovery which flowed 21 MMcf/d from Upper Jurassic sandstones
  • UK 107/21-1, which encountered a 400-ft (122-m) sand in the lower Jurassic.

DUG will perform broadband processing and imaging using its de-ghosting solution DUG Broad. Processing is expected to be completed next spring.


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