Seismic oil exploration starts offshore

A seismic survey in the PEL83 Offshore Licence comprises an area of around 3000 km² in Namibia’s deep-water area.

23 January 2019 | Energy

Augetto Graig

Portuguese-based energy company Galp will start with a 3D seismic research campaign in Namibia’s Deep-water Offshore Licence PEL83 in the Orange Basin on Friday.

The survey, contracted to Polarcus UK, will cover an area of around 3 000 square kilometres and should be completed in March.

The PEL83 licence was awarded in August 2016 by the ministry of mines and energy to a Galp-led consortium that also includes the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Namcor) and Custos Energy, a Namibian company that has been a local partner of Galp since 2012, the Namibia Economist has reported.

The licence covers a total area of around 10 000 km². The area is located approximately 260 km from Lüderitz in what is considered a ‘Frontier Exploration Basin’.

Galp is a publicly held Portuguese energy company, with an international presence. Its activities cover all stages of the energy sector's value chain, from prospection and extraction of oil and natural gas from reservoirs located kilometres under the sea surface, to the development of efficient and environmentally sustainable energy solutions for customers, whether large industries that seek to increase their competitiveness, or individual consumers that seek the most flexible solutions for their home and mobility needs, according to their website.

They also claim to assist economic development of the 11 countries where Galp operates and to the social progress of those communities. Galp employs 6 389 people.

Polarcus is a maritime and technological innovation company which has invested in the latest new-build vessel designs and the most technologically advanced seismic and navigation systems to collect a seismic fleet that is one of the most modern and advanced in the world.

On 3 January Polarcus chief financial officer Hans-Peter Burlid announced that the utilisation of this seven-vessel fleet was at 96% for the last quarter of 2018, and at 87% for the year, up from 77%.

By the end of December the fleet was already 90% booked for the first quarter of this year, 85% for the second and more than half for the third.

On Tuesday MarineTraffic.com reported that the Polarcus Asima, the Polarcus Adira and the Polarcus Alima were all off the coast of Mauritania on route to an unrecognised destination designated ‘Survery Req CPA 7 NM.’ The Polarcus Alima, which had been in Walvis Bay since December, was also shown on route with its destination designation listed as ‘Towing Cables CPA 7 NM.’

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