Hydro and ffA Launch Breakthrough Subsurface Imaging Technology

An intensive research and development collaboration between Hydro and ffA has achieved a step change in the quality of subsurface images available to geoscientists, well planners and reservoir engineers.

A new software toolset, known as Hydro AVI, for Advanced Volume Interpretation, enables rapid and detailed reconnaissance of large 3D seismic data sets, delineation and measurement of potential reservoirs and identification of hydrocarbon indicators with unprecedented speed and clarity.

Key to the success of the project was the development of tools for analyzing the information provided by examining multiple frequencies within the seismic data and blending this information into a single 3D image. As the oil and gas industry's leading provider of 3D image processing technology ffA was able to meet the technical challenge and deliver a demanding Hydro specification by providing sophisticated background technology and image processing expertise. The resulting application has been tested and proven in Hydro's E&P operations and meets the highest standards of geotechnical integrity.

A number of the Hydro AVI tools are to be commercialized by ffA. They will be integrated into the January 2007 release of SVI Pro, ffA's flagship product for processing and analysis of 3D seismic data.

Dr. Paul Spencer, Principal Geophysicist at Hydro, commented: "Hydro set up a collaboration with ffA in 2004 to improve on conventional subsurface information workflows by combining advanced 3D Image Processing and Analysis, visualisation and interpretation techniques. The resulting Hydro AVI software is being widely used within Hydro and is contributing to the achievement of significant gains in drilling success and other key E&P performance indicators. We are now working with ffA on other leading edge developments with a particular focus on advanced structural imaging techniques"

ffA's mission is to achieve continuous improvement in the quality and delivery of subsurface information for exploration and development projects. Jonathan Henderson, ffA's Managing Director, believes the collaboration with Hydro is a big factor in pursuing that goal:

"Hydro is globally recognized as E&P technology leaders and they apply the highest standards of geotechnical professionalism in their research and development projects. They were amongst the earliest adopters of SVI Pro when it was released in 2005, and it is a mark of the quality of the collaboration that Hydro AVI moved from concept to implementation in such a short time frame."

Foster Findlay Associates Limited ("ffA") is a leader in the development and commercialization of 3D seismic image processing technology for the oil and gas industry. ffA provides products and services to majors, NOC's and senior independents worldwide.

ffA Technology improves estimation of reserves, de-risking of drilling targets and well path planning by extracting comprehensive and detailed geological information from 3D seismic data, rapidly, objectively and reliably.

Development of ffA technology is informed by demanding R&D relationships with major operators. ffA Technology has been proven on over 100 operational projects, from characterization of deep water channels offshore Angola to close focus fault imaging in the North Sea and delineation of complex salt bodies in the Gulf of Mexico.

ffA is an independent UK company with offices in Aberdeen and Newcastle-upon-Tyne.