Global Seeps

Offshore Oil Slick Database

Oil slick information is valuable to oil exploration companies for the detection and monitoring of natural seepage and oil pollution on the ocean’s surface.

With over 20 years’ experience carrying out offshore projects for the oil and gas industries, Airbus Defence and Space has interpreted over 20,000 satellite scenes for the purpose of mapping natural oil slicks for the Global Seeps database.

Definitive risk ranking tool for the exploration industry

Global Seeps is a non-exclusive database of offshore oil slicks, constructed by systematically screening the world’s offshore basins, using a wide range of archive and newly programmed satellite data.

The database contains over 25,000 potential seepage slicks identified, including slick source points, slick vectors, probable slick type and confidence levels.

All data is immediately available on a local, regional or global licence and new acquisition can be programmed according to user request.

Key features and benefits

  1. Cost-effective risk ranking tool for new exploration
  2. Worldwide dual coverage data
  3. High resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data ensures all slicks are captured
  4. Slick characterisation identifying natural seepage and man made pollution
  5. Unique manual interpretation of all scenes to ensure all features are classified and ranked correctly
  6. Continuously updated with new data and new areas
  7. Annual subscription services available

Oil Slick Detection

Global Seeps screening uses satellite data acquired over the ocean to detect any oil slicks that may be present on the sea surface. The imagery is interpreted to identify slicks which may be sourced from natural seepage from hydrocarbon reserves.

When oil leaks from a reservoir under the sea floor, small oil coated gas bubbles travel up through the water column to the sea surface, where they form a very thin film on the water. This film can then be detected on satellite imagery and mapped, providing the data is collected under the correct weather and ocean conditions.

To ensure the quality of the Global Seeps results, all imagery used is extensively screened for weather compliancy and a minimum of two dates of imagery per scene footprint is acquired for all offshore areas. Using at least two image dates helps to increase the confidence of each feature found as well as pinpoint source points for multi-date seeps.

Key Applications

  1. Cost effective risk ranking tool prior to new exploration
  2. Seismic Planning & Seismic Integration
  3. Screening Frontier Basins & new exploration licensing rounds
  4. Planning Geochemical Sampling programmes
  5. Oil spill detection and pollution monitoring
  6. Assessing Offshore and Coastal Activities (e.g. ships, oil rigs etc)
  7. Initial Environmental risk assessment environmental impact statement or a full environmental baseline