GXT begins 12,000-km speculative survey for DGH

Vol 9, PW 20 (26 Jan 06) Exploration & Production

GX Technology of Houston has begun its long-awaited speculative 2D seismic survey of the east and west coasts of India for the DGH.

Last weekend, seismic vessel Geosearcher (contracted by GXT from SCAN Geophysical of Norway) reached Mumbai to begin a Long Offset 12,000-km 2D survey using one 10-km cable in the Mumbai Offshore. Were planning to be on the west coast for four to six weeks, we hear.

Fishermen might slow down the operations a bit but we hope to have acquired all the data of the east and west coast by the end of May. After the Mumbai Offshore, Geosearcher will head south to the Kerala Konkan basin and round the southern tip of India through the Palk Strait up to the Bay of Bengal fan on the Indian maritime boundary with Bangladesh.

All of Indias offshore regions will be sampled, adds our source. This type of survey has not been done anywhere else in the world.

It maps and connects the shallow areas with the deep waters and provides a regional framework that is unique to the survey. All the parameters of Indias petroleum systems will be mapped.

In ultra deepwater areas, Geosearcher will acquire data from water depths of between 3000 to 3500 metres. Will the data be ready for the NELP-VI roadshows If the roadshows are held in April the data wont be ready in time, we hear.

Only preliminary pre-stack data will be available for the roadshows. Final data sets will be ready in December this year.

Last December, GXT signed a profit-share contract with the DGH that allows it to recover the cost of the survey. PETROWATCH understands four multinationals have agreed to underwrite the survey with a payment of $3m each: Exxon, Petrobras, Total and British Gas.

ONGC has agreed to pay approximately $8m. Final data sets, when ready at the end of the year, will be on sale to latecomers for $5m.