New solution recycles free seismic data to help wind farm developers

New solution recycles free seismic data to help wind farm developers

UK-headquartered Ocean Geophysics has introduced a solution that recycles and reprocesses freely available seismic data with the aim of helping developers reduce cost and risk when deciding which wind farms to bid for.

Image used for illustrative purposes only; Hornsea One offshore wind farm; Photo credit: Ørsted

In Europe and Australia, historical seismic data – for example from offshore oil & gas or renewable industries – is often freely available through national energy authorities. To supplement this, it is possible to purchase data from the archives of oil companies that previously operated in the region, Ocean Geophysics explains.

The company’s solution takes historical data and using advanced software and modern processing techniques reveals previously hidden information in the shallower regions with the aim of reducing cost and risk of offshore wind developments, potentially by avoiding unnecessary and costly reconnaissance surveys offshore.

Ocean Geophysics’s high-capacity data processing center is located in Chang Mai, Thailand.

“We are essentially exemplifying the transformative power of advanced data processing techniques in enhancing vintage sub-bottom profiler/pinger data and S-UHRS from previous seismic surveys. Developers can utilise this reprocessed seismic data as part of their bid/no-bid decision making processes,” said Chris Weller, Director of Seismic at Ocean Geophysics.

“We have effectively bridged the gap between shallow and deeper data layers through meticulous processing, rendering them more interpretable and insightful. This breakthrough has unveiled previously obscured details, notably exposing a delicate layer of sediment that had until now remained invisible to conventional analysis methods. This thus gives insights into geology that was previously obscured by both the processing at the time and also the method of acquisition.”

Initially, raw sub-bottom profiler data undergoes rigorous preprocessing to mitigate noise and artefacts, ensuring the integrity of data analyses, and subsequently, sophisticated algorithms and signal processing techniques extract nuanced information embedded within the dataset.

A key aspect of the process involves integrating shallow and deeper data layers, which traditionally presented challenges due to discrepancies in resolution and clarity, Ocean Geophysics said, adding that by using innovative processing techniques it can now merge these disparate layers, facilitating a much clearer and holistic interpretation of subsurface structures and sedimentary formations. This is said to have unlocked previously inaccessible information, shedding new light on geological processes and environmental dynamics.