Geoscience

bathymetric image of seafloor landslideOffshore developments on the continental margins need to assess the potential for geohazards such as turbidity currents and landslides (such as that imaged on the right), which could damage, destroy or displace offshore structures and pipelines.  We specialise in working with companies to plan cost effective surveys, analyse the shallow geophysical data to identify sediment sampling strategies and analyse the sediment data to build a geological history of the development area.  This geological history is critical to understanding the geohazard risk since it will identify the age and frequency of past events, thus enabling an assessment of the likelihood of future events.

We have a proven track record of working with the hydrocarbon industry. Previous and current clients include Shell, Woodside Petroleum, Shell SPEX, Worley Parsons, South Stream and Advanced Geomechanics.

Our expertise

Prof. Phil Weaver has specialised in high-resolution stratigraphy of seafloor sediments and has developed new techniques in the field such as high-resolution coccolith stratigraphy. Phil held the position of Professor of Stratigraphy at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton until 2010.  Prof. Doug Masson has spent his scientific career working in the field of shallow geophysics using sidescan sonar, swath bathymetry and seismic profiles, and has worked closely with industry.  Doug held the position of Professor of Sedimentology at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton until 2011. Phil and Doug have worked together on many scientific and industrial projects and have often been contracted to solve complicated issues such as choosing optimum routes for pipelines in areas of complex topography or determining the cause of unexpected pipeline displacement.

Some of the services we can offer include:

Integration of geophysical data, including:

  • bathymetry
  • seismic profiles
  • sidescan sonar
  • photographic data

Sediment core analysis, including:

  • Core preparation
  • Core photography
  • visual core logging
  • Multisensor core logging
  • Micropaleontology including high-resolution coccolith studies
  • X-radiography
  • Sediment analysis (grain size and geotechnics)
  • Carbon-14 dating
  • Core storage

Data integration:

Integration of all available data sets to determine recent geological history of an area, assessment of more and less geologically active locations and input into route planning for pipelines and risk assessment for development areas.

 

Examples of previous industry projects

  • South Stream: pipeline studies
  • Laverda, Australia: geohazard assessment
  • Malampaya, Philippines: pipeline displacement study
  • Pluto, Australia slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides
  • PNG, Papua New Guinea, gas pipeline: slope stability studies
  • Chinguetti, Mauritania slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides
  • Mauritania, Mauritania, slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides
  • Stybarrow, Australia: slope stability studies
  • Enfield, Australia slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides
  • Sunrise, Australia slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides
  • Bonga, Nigeria slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides along the pipeline route
  • Santa Rita pipeline route, Philippines: slope stability studies
  • Malampaya, Philippines slope stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides along the pipeline route in an area of high seismic activity
  • Oman-India pipeline sediment stability studies: assessment of turbidity current activity and landslides along the pipeline route

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