Jointly developed next-generation land seismic system focuses on complex geologic environments

Image: Geokinetics Inc.

French oil giant Total is partnering with two Texas seismic companies to develop a next-generation land seismic acquisition and processing system focused on complex geologic environments, such as foothills, where significant “yet to find” hydrocarbons remain.

Sugar Land-based Wireless Seismic Inc., which provides the industry's only fully scalable wireless seismic recording systems with real-time data transmission, and Houston-based Geokinetics Inc., one of the world’s largest independent land and seafloor geophysical companies, are teaming up with Total E&P Research & Development to create the Multiphysics Exploration Technology Integrated System (METIS). A large-scale commercial pilot project is targeted for 2021.

The goal of METIS is to deliver true-to-life 3D subsurface models by optimizing prospect evaluation and drilling performance in hard-to-access areas. An integrated real-time geophysical and automated logistics system, METIS will significantly increase the efficiency of seismic acquisition and quickly deliver 3D data to interpreters with minimal HSE exposure, the companies said in a press release.

Total initiated the METIS R&D program, which has an initial five-year term, to cover all facets of the geophysics workflow, from real-time wireless seismic data acquisition through real-time processing and interpretation.

As a METIS development partner, Wireless provides:

• Real-time seismic recording infrastructure that supports the 150,000+ channels required by METIS deployments.

• High-speed, real-time radio telemetry system, based on next-generation radio technology from Wireless.

• Seismic recording channel called DART (downfall air receiver technology) deployed from aerial drones.
And development partner Geokinetics provides:

• Integrated seismic solutions, from survey design and modelling, to advanced acquisition methodologies and data processing and reservoir analysis capabilities.

• Logistics and project management expertise, helping ensure timely and efficient execution in challenging environments.

• Geokinetics’ Operations Management System (OMS) and QHSE commitments, helping ensure that operational elements of METIS are managed effectively.

“With METIS, Total is taking the lead in resolving the challenges of 3D seismic acquisition and real-time processing in hard-to-access environments, such as foothills, which today make many exploration opportunities uneconomical and field development far from optimal,” said Florent Bertini, Earth Imaging R&D program director at Total.

“Beyond the high 3D quality we obviously target for our geoscientists, our core ambition is to develop METIS with the highest HSE standards. Far beyond foothill environments, METIS, when industrialized, has the potential to be the leading technology for onshore seismic acquisition, including UXO lands.”