Page 40: of Offshore Engineer Magazine (Sep/Oct 2021)

Digital Transformation

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Despite oil prices recently edging past $80 a barrel, scars from two recent oil industry downturns in fve years have forced ofshore seismic surveyors to look at ways to diversify.

By Bartolomej Tomic arine seismic survey companies provide es- porting that vessel utilization in the offshore oil and gas seis- sential data to offshore oil and gas explorers mic data acquisition sector had reached pre-pandemic levels to make better-informed drilling decisions. in the third quarter of 2021.

However, with every oil industry downturn, Rystad, which monitors the activity of 106 seismic vessels,

M seismic players are among the frst to feel the pang, as explora- said the seismic feet’s hibernation was over, with around 68% tion budgets usually get cut signifcantly and revenue streams of the feet now surveying or underway. According to Rystad, for seismic data frms dry up. the seismic feet matches the utilization levels of the frst quar-

This was particularly the case last year when the industry ter of 2020, before the pandemic-induced slowdown hit the was hit with a double whammy: COVID-19 and a global seismic industry. lockdown that hit demand for oil plus a fallout between Rus- The worst time for the feet was from the third quarter of sia and OPEC that fooded the market with oil, sending the 2020 through March 2021, when 46% of the global feet was prices down even further. As expected, exploration budgets inactive (either standby in port or stacked), Rystad said.

were cut, and seismic players revenues were hit, with some of them, such as Polarcus, going out of business.

(Partial) Pivot

Now, with oil prices back up to around $80, the situation

While the market sentiment seems to be improving, pes- for explorers has improved, with Rystad Energy recently re- simistic long-term views on the future of oil, recent and fre- 40 OFFSHORE ENGINEER OEDIGITAL.COM

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