NOPSEMA evaluates Santos’ geotechnical and geophysical survey plans

Australia’s National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) is currently assessing Santos’ plans to conduct a geotechnical and geophysical survey within Permit WA-437-P located in Commonwealth waters.

The site survey location at it’s closest point is approximately 145km from the town of Port Hedland.

The site survey is required to support pre-engineering studies for any future development and aims to aid in the understanding of the local geology and identify any potential subsea hazards.

The geophysical component of the survey is required to obtain detailed bathymetry measurements and detect hazards on or below the seabed.

Geophysical data collection will consist of single beam echo sounder (SBES), multi beam echo sounder (MBES), side scan sonar (SSS), and sub-bottom profiling (SBP).

The geophysical survey will consist of in-situ penetration testing, borehole sampling via piston coring, vibrocoring or rock coring (substrate pending) and box coring.

The Phase 1 of the survey is planned to start as early as Q2 2020 and is estimated to take 15 days to complete.
Phase 2 may follow Phase 1 or begin as part of a subsequent mobilisation during 2020/2021 and is estimated to take 45 days to complete.

Both phases of the survey will be completed by December 2021.

The timing of the survey is dependent upon vessel availability, weather conditions, the receipt of the required statutory approvals.