"The oil companies are drilling what they had and getting healthy now," said Steve Mitchell, vice-president of operations at Fairfield Industries, "and this has to happen before seismic can improve."
emphasized stable -- not necessarily high -- oil prices are a key factor for improvement in the seismic business and in the oil and gas industry overall. He's
not alone with this opinion.
"There are significant issues with natural gas," Mitchell
said."The deliverability issue is looming, we're not gaining on storage, and demand will stay because it's the cleanest burning fuel.
"I think we're going to see gas exploration pick up," he
said, "with deeper drilling for gas on land and the shelf."
There's mounting interest on the part of the oil companies in more sophisticated seismic technology such as multicomponent, or 4-C/3-D seismic, which bodes well for the seismic data gatherers.But there are problems to be overcome, such as price and a dearth of commercially available interpretation software.
There are the ubiquitous doubters who say the improved data won't justify the additional acquisition cost, particularly in areas where 3-D programs and surveys already exist.
noted a recent Houston Geological Society function featuring a 4-C/3-D presentation was SRO.
Here Comes the Sun?
"There's two ways to increase reserves; either buy them or use the drill bit," Mitchell
said, "and the drill bit requires seismic data."