Apr 25, 2013

Space imagery of the Astrakhan gas condensate field enabled to reduce costs and to follow the letter of law

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Fresh and unbiased data about the condition of the mining allotment of the Astrakhan gas condensate field is received and cases of illegal construction are detected. Activities were carried out by the specialists of ScanEx RDC in behalf of this gas company.

Application of detailed SPOT 5 images (2.5 m resolution) and EROS B (0.7 m) turned out to be most efficient from the viewpoint of reducing time and costs, as compared to other monitoring methods, ground survey and inspection included. Archived (2011) and new (2012) satellite images were applied for this monitoring tasks, which comparative analysis enabled to detect changes within the AOI.

— First, the whole territory of the allotment was imaged at the 2.5 m resolution and then, after comparing with previous images, we did a higher resolution imaging of some areas (0.7 m resolution) for detected changes analysis, — explains Nataly Mitkinykh, expert of the Operational Monitoring Department of ScanEx RDC.

The absence of a human factor excludes the error in in-situ changes interpretation. Over 20 newly erected and changed facilities have been detected during the satellite-based monitoring period. Of them, 11 facilities are located within the limits of the actively explored part of the gas condensate field and 9 appeared within a remote part of the mining allotment.

Space data helped meet the requirements of the RF regulations and minimize expenses. For example, the Law on Subsoil Use (Articles 23, 25, 49) prohibits voluntary construction within the mining allotment limits; Administrative and Criminal Codes of RF envisage mutual liability of both the illegal constructor and the subsoil user. The latter shall detect cases of arbitrary construction on a deposit field in time.

Operational submission of data from SPOT 5 and EROS B satellites became possible due to the operation of the network of UniScan ground stations of ScanEx RDC in direction imagery data reception mode. After processing and analysis of the data ScanEx’s specialists submitted imagery materials to the customer via a special geoportal.

Space monitoring of the mining allotment at the Astrakhan gas condensate field will be continued.

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