Our geophysical business has many different facets and I really enjoy continuing to learn about areas that are not our core business areas but where we can add value. One opportunity to learn was when we recently hosted our latest seminar at our UK head office which, on this occasion, was on the latest microseismic techniques and current UK monitoring legislation.

The seminar kicked off with presentations on how microseismic acquisition and analysis allows real time, well specific, in situ observation of the permeability enhancement that can be achieved through stimulation of the rock surrounding the well bore. These observations can be turned into an accurate and more robust well appraisal so the well profitability can be quickly assessed. The seismic acquisition method uses standard surface techniques with real time in field processing which is sometimes augmented with down hole receivers so there is considerable similarity with conventional 3D acquisition.

We then moved on to the current monitoring legislation from UK’s DECC which uses a traffic light system to set limits on the induced seismicity from fracking operations. This uses a number of passive monitoring receivers to determine if the Moment is below 0.0 (green) where fracking can continue, if the Moment is between 0 and 0.5 (amber) where the fracking can continue at a reduced intensity and monitoring is intensified and above 0.5 (red) where the fracking is immediately suspended.

By learning about different applications of seismic such as microseismic and medical applications (eg http://rehabilitation.ualberta.ca/news/2016/march/seismic-for-the-spine-vibration-technology-offers-alternative-to-mri who knows where we might end up?

Simon Hill – Managing Director