The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) is on the hunt for a new seismic partner.

The OGA published four tenders today, worth £17.3million in total, including a contract to provide the subsurface studies and reservoir evaluation.

The seismic acquisition and processing programme tender, worth £11million, states the successful recipient must survey areas over South West Britain including the Celtic Sea, Western English Channel, Irish Sea and the East Shetland Platform. The areas were selected after industry consultation.

The OGA also submitted tenders for geoscience project services, worth £3million, subsurface studies, worth £1.8million and field support engineering services, worth £1.3million.

“A separate ITT for legacy seismic data reprocessing will be issued in due course,” according to the site listing.

Speaking about the new seismic efforts at a recent industry event, Gunther Newcombe, OGA’s director of Exploration & Production, said: “In 2016 we also got another package of money – £20million from government

“We will be going out to tender with regards to the acquisition and processing of seismic data in the areas on the Western side of the UK from the East Irish sea down to the southwest approaches and the east of Orkney.

“The reason we are doing that is there has been hardly a well drilled in the area for 15 years, and no seismic at all in the last decade. In fact, there has been no seismic worth mentioning.

“The focus is very strongly on the frontier in these areas.”

This latest seismic survey follows £20million worth of seismic work, covering seismic survey of the Rockall Trough and Mid-North Sea High areas completed last year. The project delivered approximately 40,000 km of new and legacy data.

Earlier this year, Prime Minister David Cameron flew into Aberdeen and announced a £250 deal for the industry, including an additional £20million in funding for a second seismic survey.

At the time he said: “If we do this properly there’s a third of this great and powerful industry to go in terms of the domestic extraction, quite aside from the international work that can be done.”

Industry steward Sir Ian Wood later labelled the additional seismic survey a true “game-changer” for the industry, helping it better understand and unlock the North Sea’s resources.

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