Case Study: Facilitating efficient 2D seismic acquisition for petroleum exploration in Namibia

A case study demonstrating how STRYDE's nodal seismic systems enabled Polaris Natural Resources to conduct an efficient and cost-effective seismic survey for oil and gas exploration in Namibia.

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Project snapshot

Seismic acquisition contractor: Polaris Natural Resources

On behalf of: An Upstream Exploration and Production Company (ReconAfrica)

Industry: Oil and gas

Location: Frontier Basin in Namibia

Environment type: Vegetated flat savanna land, utilising existing roads and trails where feasible

Project goal:

To explore the petroleum potential of a Frontier Basin in Namibia utilising 2D seismic survey methods to understand existing positive drilling results and pinpoint future drilling locations

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Nodes deployed across 497KM

Survey snapshot

Survey type: 2D survey, dense shot, and receiver points

Deployment method: By foot

Survey layout:

  • Standard North, South, East, and West 2D lines, taking logistical and environmental elements into consideration for zero environmental impact shooting
  • 5m receiver point, 10m source point spacing, recording 5 thumps per shot point

Source used: Single impulse thumper trucks (Polaris’ proprietary Explorer low impact source technology)

Sampling frequency: 2ms

Seismic trace density: 240,000 seismic traces per kilometer

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I believe the use of STRYDE’s low cost, nimble and environmentally friendly Nodes, coupled with our proprietary thumper source technology that has been designed to minimise environmental impact was key to the success of assuring this survey was sanctioned, and the acquisition of this critical subsurface dataset was achieved in the most efficient way possible. At Polaris, we are extremely conscious about the impact our work has on the environment, the local economy, and the local people, and I am proud to say that the technology used in this survey enabled the project timeline to be accelerated, without compromising data quality and therefore minimised disruption to the local communities and environment.

Bill Mooney, CEO at Polaris Natural Resources

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The project challenges

  • Because the survey location was deemed as an environmentally sensitive area, the team required an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to be completed prior to the survey being sanctioned, meaning that the team had to:

    - Acquire seismic equipment that was proven to reduce the environmental impact of the survey to obtain a permit to work

    - Adhere to strict environmental footprint management conditions during the survey planning, preparation, and execution

  • The parameters of the survey were changed by the Exploration and Production Company in close proximity to the survey kick-off date, meaning 3,500 additional Nodes were required at short notice

  • The survey was conducted in a remote location, in a complex terrain causing logistical challenges
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  • To remain compliant with the permit to work conditions, there was a requirement to utilise local content to attain a level of socio-economic progressiveness, and because the survey spanned across multiple villages and areas, it meant there was a requirement to train and induct locals, from each of these villages, during the survey, which compromised the ability to adhere to the project timeline

  • The window of opportunity for shooting the survey was weather dependent, resulting in the survey having to be shot within a tight timeframe

  • As this was a frontier, unexplored basin, the Upstream Exploration and Production company required a solution that was low cost, without compromising the quality of the output dataset  

Our solution

STRYDE’s Nimble System™ was deployed to Polaris in Namibia and consisted of: 9,000 STRYDE Nodes™, 3 Nests and server units, the STRYDE nodal operating system (STRYDE’s charge, harvest, and Node management system), backpacks, planting devices, and nodal holders (magazine strips and trays), navigator tablets, initialisation devices™ and field support personnel

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The result

The 2D survey is now complete and the high-density 2D seismic dataset has been harvested and sent for processing and interpretation.

The data gathered during this acquisition will enable the Upstream Exploration and Production Company operating in Namibia to understand the results achieved from 2 successful wells and pinpoint the exact location for effective drilling operations to commence and possible 3D seismic surveys.

The value STRYDE systems unlocked for Polaris Natural Resources

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We went back to STRYDE with an emergency situation requiring another 3,500 nodes to become more efficient.  On Friday August 13th, 2021, we agreed the contract and STRYDE had those nodes in Windhoek on August 26th and we deployed them on August 31st.  This resulted in a 100% increase in production, and we finished the program on a strong note.

Joe Little, Executive Vice President

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