The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has partnered with France’s Total to deploy drones and unmanned vehicles to collect 3D seismic data as it expands its search for new oil and gas resources throughout the emirate of Abu Dhabi—the first time the technology has been used in the region.
In a statement, ADNOC said that thousands of sensors would be deployed by air using a fleet of drones through a pilot project using Total’s Multiphysics Exploration Technologies Integrated System (METIS), the world’s first automated seismic acquisition system.
Dr. Alan Nelson, ADNOC’s Chief Technology Officer, said, “METIS is a ground-breaking automated technology with the potential to conduct seismic surveys in harsh environments, such as the desert, which are tough on people and equipment.”
ADNOC commissioned the world’s largest continuous 3D onshore and offshore seismic survey, covering a combined area of up to 53,000 km in 2018.
“Total is focusing on innovation in seismic acquisition to minimise the surface impact of petroleum activities and improve the quality of sub-surface images while increasing our overall operational efficiency,” said Dominique Janodet, the Vice President R&D of Total Exploration & Production.
The UAE is the world’s sixth-largest oil producer, with about 96 per cent of its reserves in Abu Dhabi.
Last year, the Total acquired 20 per cent stake in the offshore Umm Shaif and Nasr concession, a five per cent interest in the Lower Zakum concession as well as a 40 per cent stake in Abu Dhabi’s first Unconventional Gas Concession.