Bullying Business Ethics Geo-services harassment Human Resources marine seismic Marine Seismic Market Marine Seismic Operations mobbing UN Global Compact Whistleblower Workplace Bullying, Harassment & Mobbing

John Francas, PGS UK Head of Legal, Ignorance and the Fraud of Omission

PGS Exploration (UK) Limited is located at 4 The Heights, Brooklands, Weybridge, England, KT13 0NY and thus is governed by the laws of England

This is Legal Contractually Protected Public Interests Disclosure under English Law

Norway’s PGS ASA is misusing the Thai criminal justice system to persecute their USA citizen crime victim and whistleblower. PGS are ignoring legal jurisdiction issues, statute of limitations issues, and fraudulent content by omission and false claims issues which make these prosecutions illegal, in my view. Beyond this, PGS does not acknowledge and investigate the whistleblowing claims reported to their compliance hotline, as their Responsibility Report and policy state. Demand that PGS stop misrepresenting to the public and investigate!

Jon Erik Reinhardsen, Equinor Chairman of the board of directors & former PGS CEO
Rune Olav Pedersen, PGS CEO & President
Jon Erik Reinhardsen, Equinor Styreleder og tidligere administrerende direktør i PGS
Rune Olav Pedersen, PGS ASA administrerende direktør og konsernsjef

I am not a multinational company, but I have been around the block and around the world.  I understand the challenges faced in this climate.  I cannot accept my narrative being defined through the tyranny of self-impressed psychopaths.  I want control of my narrative.

An American, the UK Data Protection Act, Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) and the Tyranny of “Accurate Data” [3 July 2015]

If senior management is willing to conspire, lie, and falsify documents to deal with what should be a relatively simple problem to control or solve, had they only effectively applied their own policies and been responsible, what would keep any company from corrupting the outcome of other unfavorable health and safety or other controversial information?  Should we be resigned to allow such companies to just change the rules whenever they cannot “win” on their terms?

When Human Resources is Corrupt (10 August 2015)

PGS ASA Continues to Breach the Terms and Conditions of Contracts Governed by the Laws of England and Harass and Illegally Use the Thai Criminal Justice System to Silence Legal (England/Norway) Protected Public Disclosure

PGS ASA has recently reinvigorated their dubious legal actions in Thailand to silence and disempower the accuser of PGS ASA board of directors and executives of criminal acts through the misuse of the Thai legal system.  PGS ASA is violating my human rights and rights under English law and contract through ignoring accusations of executive criminal acts and whistleblowing claims.  I seek to act on and protect my human rights and rights under English law and contract to accuse perpetrators of crimes against me and my family and seek justice.  I am further disenfranchised because I am a USA citizen who signed a contract bound by the laws of England.  PGS ASA has never exercised on a civil breach of contract using the legal instruments at their disposal governed by the laws of England.  The claims put forth in Thailand omit the very important reference of the current legal relationship that exists between the plaintiffs and defendant.  I believe that the many omissions of exculpatory facts and evidence intentionally and maliciously misrepresent my publications as criminal when they are known by the plaintiffs to be legal and protected.  The claims being advanced in Thailand are fraudulent and intended to intimidate a victim of crimes and whistleblower into submission and silence.  The claims’ cited publications are protected under English law through provisions of contracts signed 27 September 2010 and 5 December 2013 between the plaintiffs and defendant.  The non-disparagement clauses contained within these contracts provide legal avenues of action for transgressions much less serious than criminal defamation.  Most importantly, the cited contracts both reference the UK Public Interests Disclosure Act 1998 (PIDA) which protects whistleblowing. 

The legal actions forwarded by directors of PGSUK in the Thai legal system is an overstep of the English company legal jurisdiction.  English law has all the avenues of redress to resolve the issues addressed within the Thai criminal claims fairly.  If the cited contracts did not provide all pertinent legal protections required, then what was the utility of the fore-mentioned signed contracts including non-disparagement and jurisdiction clauses?  This is more of an issue of legal contract management incompetence or criminal cover-up and not defamation.  The only victims of crimes in Thailand (fraud, blackmail, extortion, destruction of evidence, etc.), related to the parties of these complaints, are me and my Thai family who have been distressed and traumatized, had their health endangered, and who have also had to find resources (been robbed) to defend themselves against what I believe to be illegally financed false claims.  PGSUK directors hold no bona fide legal business interests or citizenship in Thailand.  They personally never visited Thailand to even sign the resolution contracts 11 November 2018.  All that was required of them was to pay a Thai lawyer to process their illegal (under English law) actions.  PGS ASA/PGSUK vindictive and malicious intent is to persecute and harm their USA citizen accuser and his Thai family.  I am married to a Thai national and we have three (3) Thai-USA children together.  We all lived in Thailand together until recently.  These actions by PGSUK have broken our family.  The Thai legal system should protect the rights and safety of my Thai family above the rights of corrupt Norwegian executives and directors of an English company who contract out their illegal harassment to a Thai lawyer to avoid accountability for English crimes!

Under the rules of commercial law, an incorporated business must follow the laws and regulations where the company was formed.  PGS Exploration (UK) Limited, 4 The Heights, Brooklands, Weybridge, Surrey, KT13 0NY (PGSUK).  According to the records held by UK Companies House, PGSUK is registered in England.  The Companies Act 2006 forms the primary source of UK company law.  A director of a UK company must (a) act in accordance with the company’s constitution, and (b) only exercise powers for the purposes for which they are conferred.  The litigation initiated against me in Thai (criminal) legal system violates provision (b) explicitly.  Exclusive jurisdiction clauses, such as the ones that was included within the cited contracts, limit disputes to the courts of specific and defined jurisdictions. An exclusive jurisdiction clause intends to provide certainty that parties know where they each can be sued.  PGSUK directors and secretary must honor their fiduciary obligations of law and contract based on the laws of England first and foremost.  The laws of England must always take precedence in every business decision made by PGSUK, especially contractual terms and conditions specifically citing legal jurisdictions attached to legal rights, such as the General Data Protection Requirement GDPR (formally UK Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA)) and PIDA.  Directors of PGSUK do not have legal authority to take away rights under English law and contract.  The terms and conditions of the cited contracts remain enforceable under the laws of England, as does my right to blow the whistle.   

The most disturbing document is the memo signed by Per Arild Reksnes, EVP PGS Marine Contract (now EVP Operations) and Terje Bjølseth, SVP HR.  This memo is a forgery.  There are several detectable problems.  The Memo is addressed to my attention, but it was never received by me while I was employed with PGS. 

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen Should Resign 2 (20-Sep-2015)  
Did David Nicholson, HR Manager accused within 20 September 2013 grievance of abuse of power, misuse of the PGS performance management system, and defamation allowed to proffer and sign a fraudulent contract to escape accountability? Nicholson is the only signator on most the documents within my personnel file which I claim are forgeries.

The evidence and reasons to support the allegations of breaches in the Code of Ethics have been written about in previous LinkedIn posts, but are grounded in conspiracy and the abuse of position used to discredit and distort my professional standing in retaliation for revealing a number of internal organization policy transgressions as well as violations in the base constructs of the Law of Contract as it pertains to employment.  However, in this effort, individuals have also falsified and forged personnel file documents and deceived government compliance organizations as to their authenticity and content accuracy.

The Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) Should Expel Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen (11 October 2015)

My publications began 3 July 2015 and multiple accusatory publications were provided to PGS ASA compliance for evaluation from April – September 2016.  The UK Limitation Act 1980 limits the time for a claim of defamation of one year.  The published content cited in the 2018 Thai criminal claim surpasses one-year from its publication date.  PGS ASA made a business decision to ignore the published content for several years.  No actions referencing published content were ever taken by PGS ASA/PGSUK with regard to disparagement or breach in the current legal agreements.  Therefore, no criminal legal breach in Thailand can be warranted nor be even possible legally.  How can the defendant not be in breach for disparagement under English law, but be guilty of criminal defamation under Thai law?  The publications referenced in Thai criminal claims have pointed out that PGS ASA have not exercised the protective clauses within their contracts for the express reason of avoiding culpability for breaking numerous English laws.  PGS is pursuing criminal defamation charges in Thailand which are totally ludicrous.  Such defamation implies that I am knowingly publishing untrue and damaging statements about PGS.  The Thai claim references excerpts from a criminal report submitted to UK police (Action Fraud) which I published online!  Why didn’t PGS complain to the UK police?  Why have the plaintiffs allowed such publications since 3 July 2015?  My publications are evidence backed accusations of PGS ASA executive and board of director’s violations in English law and contract, although they may in fact be criminal violations in other countries/legal jurisdictions, as well, including Thailand, Norway, and the USA.  

Over a year ago, in September 2018, the directors and former secretary of PGSUK delivered to me by e-mail two (2) summons’ to appear in Thai criminal court.  The summons’ were delivered to my personal e-mail account, as well as my then registered home address in Thailand.  This was done just as I had departed my address of record in Thailand.  The e-mail address used had not ever been provided by me to the Thai law firm representing the plaintiffs.  My passport and Thai address information also had never been provided to the Thai law firm by me.  The summons’ were in the Thai language.  As a US citizen, I resided in Thailand on visa.  I had not received the actual complaint until I returned to Thailand after shortening my trip.  However, the complaint was also in the Thai language.  As far as I am aware, plaintiff Carl Richards, a lawyer licensed to practice law in England and former secretary of PGSUK is not legally fluent in the Thai language.  I am guessing that current PGS General Counsel Lars Mysen or PGS UK Head of Legal John Francas are not legally fluent in the Thai language either.  I do not believe the PGSUK directors and plaintiffs; former PGS General Counsel and current PGS CEO and President Rune Olav Pedersen, PGS CFO and EVP Gottfred Langseth, and PGS Chief Accountant Christin Steen-Nilsen are not legally fluent in the Thai language.  Nevertheless, these directors have placed the reputation interests of a company governed by the laws of England at the discretion of a junior Thai lawyer who is not licensed to practice law in either England or Norway and who has no first-hand knowledge or legal documentation to support the claims being advanced.

PGSUK and I shared an employee-employer relationship.  PGSUK is a company governed by the laws of England.  Those laws are written in the English language.  We communicated in English for business.  As a US citizen, I was a Tier 2 visa sponsored employee of PGSUK.  Qualifying for the Tier 2 visa was not a trivial matter.  Such employment had to be requested based on unique and/or special qualifications that were not readily available in the local labor market.  One of the qualifications for the Tier 2 visa is proficiency in the English language.  Would have I qualified for the Tier 2 visa based on the current contents of my PGSUK personnel file?  My Thai wife and dependent children were also sponsored.  My employment with PGSUK ended through a termination settlement agreement signed 5 December 2013 which I now believe is fraudulent.  The claims filed in Thai criminal court reinforce this belief, as does PGS’ silence and inaction in dealing with my online publications and accusations.  What is certain, however, is how devastating and abusive PGS’ behavior has been toward me and my family.  The illegal termination from employment and subsequent blacklisting impacted me.  However, when PGSUK agreed to sponsor my employment as a foreign worker, they also agreed to comply with their duty of care contractual obligations to me as well as my spouse and dependent children.  PGS’ fraud was mean spirited and intent on destroying the victim of their crimes professionally and financially.  Such abuse obviously robs dependents of opportunities and places their health at risk.  It is violent, cowardly and mean abuse of children.  Because of this, I refuse to give-up on my pursuit of justice.  I do not believe that cowards, liars, and cheaters who abuse children should lead companies and people, even if the government of Norway, Equinor, and PGS do.

However, in spite of having a legal team, human resources team, and contract team, PGS has been unwilling to present definitive proof of compliance and legal behavior, even though they state to the public and to me otherwise.  PGS is mostly involved in a cover-up of corrupt and illicit behavior.  PGS executives have been uncooperative and silent and demonstrated no interest in resolution, but instead have ran-away from accountability. 

The Crimes of Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen (4 November 2016)

These prose chronicle multiple infractions of corporate governance, as well as provide evidence of serious wrong-doing that should sound alarms whether true or false. Either way, the publications should prompt action and engagement. The articles have been viewed by thousands within and outside the marine geophysical sector. 

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) and the Veneer of Governance (5 May 2016)

First and foremost, the claims put forth in Thailand not only ignore the statute of limitations for claims of defamation of one year in both England and Thailand, but also ignore claims that the content is protected whistleblowing.  The principal charges reiterated within several of my publications is that PGS ASA board and officers uttered, and continue to utter, forged defamatory documents that support a fraudulent contract.  This fraudulent contract was used to illegally terminate the employment of a whistleblower.  PGS ASA has provided material misrepresentations to government agencies in the United Kingdom, Norway, the United States, and now Thailand, regarding the integrity of the personal data and processes which I have contended to be false.  PGS ASA has made false accusations to defraud the Thai criminal justice system.  PGS ASA has omitted material facts, withheld, and destroyed exculpatory evidence to gain advantage and to terrorize their victim and his Thai family by using a foreign legal system.  PGS ASA wants to avoid the English legal system where executives have been accused of criminal acts.  Evidence of these criminal acts had been processed online at  The legal actions carried out last year by PGS ASA sought to restrict publications and unpublish evidence which support my accusations of crimes perpetrated by PGS ASA.  My mantra has always been simple:  legal and compliant processes cannot produce illegal and non-compliant outcomes.

The Thai criminal complaint only translated superfluous content from my online publications written in the English language to the Thai language.  Certain excerpts were then highlighted and labelled as “defamation”, void of context and supporting evidence.  How did the Thai lawyer/law firm, or any lawyer, including PGS UK Head of Legal, John Francas know whether the publications were defamatory?  The only way for Francas and the contracted (paid) Thai lawyer/law firm to possibly know what is defamatory is if PGS had completed what I had always requested: a thorough investigation.  From April 2016 – September 2016, I requested that the PGS Compliance Office (i.e., plaintiff Pedersen, et al.) to authenticate and verify the legality of the processes and documents used to process my termination settlement agreement signed 5 December 2013.  The PGS Compliance Office actually published to a wide LinkedIn™ audience that they had investigated my claim.  So, there should be a report ready to send off and provide to Francas and his Thai associate.  (However, it would need to be translated into the Thai language first?)  There is an important Memo dated 25 October 2013 and signed by Per Arild Reksnes, then PGS EVP Marine Contract and Terje Bjølseth, PGS SVP Global Human Resources.  This important Memo forms the basis of my whistleblowing and criminal accusations publications.  This Memo is intentionally not even referenced within the Thai Criminal Complaint.  This tells me that the Thai criminal claims forwarded by PGSUK directors and Carl Richards are omitting material exculpatory evidence in their CRIMINAL COMPLAINTS.  PGS ASA and the Thai lawyer knows this.  Thus, such intentional misrepresentations and omission of material facts is tantamount to PGSUK falsely accusing me of criminal behavior.  

The central thesis behind most every publication which resided on is that PGSUK processed, and continues to process, defamatory forged documents used to illegally terminate me from employment for whistleblowing.  No one from PGS/PGSUK ever engaged me prior or during the delivery of the criminal complaint.  All communications came from a Thai law firm.  The Thai lawyer has no first-hand knowledge of the events chronicled within my publications.  From my reading of the claim, particular the highlighted defamatory ( content is extracted from the following articles:

The Open Letter to Petroleum Geo-Services ASA Board of Directors (18 June 2017) p124-128 was published over one-year prior to the claim delivered to me in September 2018.  Why didn’t the PGS ASA directors respond to this letter?  Had PGS ASA board of directors responded to this letter truthfully and responsibly, every publication following 18 June 2017 likely would not have ever been published.  The delivered claim on behalf of PGSUK directors also cited the ActionFraud report?  Why didn’t PGSUK contact the UK police and demand clarification and an investigation?  The publications that comprised the criminal complaint are the product of PGS ASA neglect and inaction.  The fact is that one of the principal plaintiffs, PGSUK director and PGS CEO and President Pedersen, had throughout 2016, as PGS General Counsel and Legal Compliance, been provided with many publications that contained accusations of PGS board of directors and executive criminal acts.  Since 2016, Pedersen has never responded to the published claims of executive criminal activity as defamatory.  Neither has Pedersen ever investigated and delivered a report exonerating PGS agents of wrong-doing, even though PGS publicly stated otherwise.  Pedersen is participating in defrauding the Thai criminal justice system through forwarding a knowingly false criminal complaint.  Pedersen was PGS General Counsel and legal compliance at the time of the initial whistleblowing complaint submitted 20 September 2013.  Pedersen did not comply with PGS policy and UK law in how PGS responded to my workplace grievance.  Pedersen oversaw the creation of forged documents and confidence fraud used to process a false claim and basis for termination:

Thai litigation Sponsor/Plaintiff PGSUK Director Rune O. Pedersen was Presented the Following Articles as Member of the PGS Compliance Hotline Team more than One-Year Prior to the Defamation Claims delivered in Thailand. The UK Limitation Act 1980 does not allow Defamation Claims for Content Published over One Year. PGSUK Intentionally Omitted Citing of this Content in the 2018 Claim.

The authentication of held data records were requested again from CH [PGS Compliance Hotline], and of course could not be provided.  Without investigating and providing the source of the contents in the personnel file, along with peripheral communications, the words from the CH investigation are meaningless and only become a continuation of the fraud which began three years ago.

The Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) Ambush Meeting and the Definition of Fraud (24-May-2016)

There are so many variations between the (false) narrative espoused and held within PGS personal data records and the narrative presented within the detailed grievance document.  Anyone who had considered both of these narratives fairly, responsibly and honestly, should have easily detected and noted, and subsequently reported on, the many differences.  Certainly the individuals who chaired my grievance hearing, Reksnes and Bjølseth, should have attended to this.  [Reksnes and Bjølseth are (alleged) fraudsters.]

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) Mob Values (14-Jun-2016) first came online in August 2016.  Several blog articles had been published on the LinkedIn™ Pulse platform.  During 2016, I tried to get the attention of PGS compliance through the PGS LinkedIn™ comment space.  PGS never took any official legal action against my publications.  However, anonymous complaints eventually got me restricted from LinkedIn™. published much more content than what the Thai criminal claims included. For a long time, I have published allegations that the 5 December 2013 signed termination settlement agreement was a fraudulent agreement which was illegally proffered and supported by illegal forged documents.  I was illegally terminated for blowing the whistle in 2013.  The proffered termination settlement agreement did not comply with UK employment law.  Yet, lawyers from three firms, including my hired counsel, cooperated in processing the false claim and uttering forged instruments – criminal behavior.  I discovered that something very wrong had happened to me when I received the contents being processed within my PGSUK professional personnel file.  The claim filed in Thai criminal court is both malicious and fraudulent through its omission of legally substantive material information.    

PGSUK directors comprised a complaint that omitted our current legal relationship which is defined by an original contract of employment (OEC) signed between me and PGSUK in 27 September 2010 and a subsequent termination settlement contract agreement 5 December 2013 (SCA).  My publications, including the 20 September 2013 submitted workplace grievance which is referenced in the SCA, cite material breaches of the OEC by PGSUK and since have alleged that the SCA is fraudulent and was intended to cover-up the OEC breaches and defame me for blowing the whistle on non-compliant, unethical, and illegal acts perpetrated by PGS/PGSUK (agents).  To facilitate the use of the fraudulent SCA, PGSUK uttered defamatory forged documents to provide the appearance of a legal basis for the SCA.  I am both a victim of crimes and a whistleblower for publicly disclosing such illegal actions perpetrated against me.  Very important is the fact that PGSUK and I were already constrained by terms and conditions of contracts governed by the laws of England.  Both the OEC and SCA that possessed all of the actionable avenues of legal redress that the Thai criminal claim pursues.  The OEC and SCA include actionable Confidentiality clauses that protect parties of the contract from disparaging each other.  Disparagement is a much lower threshold than defamation, as the truth of the public disclosure is not a defense.  However, both the OEC and SCA by legal requirement under the laws of England include reference to the UK Public Interest Disclosure Act (PIDA) that protects whistleblowing.  PGSUK sponsored spurious litigation in Thailand against a whistleblower is an illegal and malicious attempt to bypass numerous accountabilities under English law.  I published evidence that PGS was processing forged documents within, Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen Should Resign 2 (20-Sep-2015). I also published, The Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) Ambush Meeting and the Definition of Fraud (24-May-2016).  I sent these articles specifically to the PGS compliance for consideration.  The Thai claim did not reference these articles.

At this point, I believe laws of Thailand have also been broken.  All publications regarding these actions by PGS/PGSUK I regard aids protected public disclosure allowed through signed legal agreements governed by English law. So, what is the Thai lawyer’s legal role and how are the legal interests of PGS/PGSUK being advanced by this litigation which I regard as illegal blackmail under the provision both Thai and English law?  Corrupt PGS board and executives are doing anything possible to silence their accuser of crimes through ignoring bona fide, data supported criminal accusations and whistleblowing claims under the laws of Norway and England.  PGS board and executives are abusing their power and delivering false accusations supported by fraudulent documentation into the Thai criminal justice system.  John Francas and his Thai lawyer associate did not do what their legal agency requires and determine the validity of my accusations rather than silence them. All that the board and executives of PGS must do is to authenticate the processes and supporting documentation used to terminate my employment by settlement agreement signed 5 December 2013 signed by PGSUK and myselfThis has always been and remains the objective of my publications.  These accusations are not defamation.  PGS’ criminal complaint holds no real evidence that demonstrates my claims are false either.  PGS’ misuse of the Thai criminal justice system is appalling.  These claims are intended to suppress the truth which is the opposite of defamation.  PGS has used the Thai criminal system to take away my rights under English law to make public interest disclosures.  The Thai criminal justice system has also been used to illegally destroy and unpublish evidence of PGS board of directors and executive criminality.  My children are Thai citizens and I cannot allow PGS corruption to destroy the Thai system of justice.  The Thai police need to investigate PGS ASA and their representative counsel for criminal acts of false criminal claims, fraud, blackmail, extortion, and destruction of evidence.  I AM THE VICTIM.   

Reputation management of the corporate brand and the executive team is paramount.  However, in the absence of real professional integrity, silence is the best way to maintain the appearance of being reputable.  Dismissing criticism simply allows employed professionals to get-on with running the company.  No time for distractions.  But, if there is no time for dealing with criticism, then why does the PGS CEO letter suggest that there is both time and willingness?

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) Mob Gaslighting (30-Jun-2016)

I have alleged PGS executives to have obstructed legally guaranteed processes, forged official records, conspired to defraud, provided material misrepresentations, breached internal policies and several UK employment and contract laws.  Most of all, PGS executives have abused their positions and violated their agency responsibilities of trust and confidence and duty of care to maintain a healthy and safe workplace.  Forgery and the uttering of forged instruments is criminal behavior.   

The Crimes of Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen (4-Sep-2016)


Bullying Business Ethics Geo-services harassment Human Resources marine seismic Marine Seismic Market Marine Seismic Operations mobbing UN Global Compact Whistleblower Workplace Bullying, Harassment & Mobbing

Articles about Norway’s Equinor (StatOil) Corrupt Chairman of the Board, Jon Erik Reinhardsen


Under the UK Limitation Act 1980 (the Act), the applicable limitation for defamation is one year from the date of accrual of the claim, which in libel claims accrued at the time of publication.

Google Image Search – Jon Erik Reinhardsen Corruption (September 2019)
2018 Corruption Perception Index (CPI)
Section 185. Destruction of Evidence
Whoever, damaging, destroying, concealing, making away with, losing or rendering useless any property or document deposited with the Court or kept by the Court in the judicial proceedings, shall be punished with imprisonment not exceeding five years or fined not exceeding ten thousand Baht, or both.


The Norwegian corporate governance Code of Practice is not enforced nor practiced in actual terms. Norway’s corruption is the byproduct of a narcissistic country that relies on a reputation of having little corruption compared to other countries. But, in truth, Norway is very corrupt, especially given its size and population distribution. Norway has an entitled executive class who direct and manage companies with little more oversight than a mythology of how things should be done. There is no other explanation for human garbage and accused criminals such as John Erik Reinhardsen, former CEO and President of PGS ASA, becoming Equinor’s Chairman of the Board.

I have the evidence to prove this, but I am being denied the opportunity to present it through both negligence and the abuse of power by those entrusted with such responsibility and authority.  Corrupt and criminal power structures reward the un-professionals who do not protest and who look the other way from injustice.  Even those who previously penned internal articles or hang posters in their work space extolling the importance of values and ethics in business submit to the greed of ascending in a corrupt and criminal hierarchy.  It’s a disgusting hypocrisy and fall from grace to observe. This is the type of low-integrity professionals that corrupt narcissistic organizations produce, and that soiled industries and professions embrace.  These un-professionals pollute and ruin the industry and the level commercial playing field.  These un-professionals would rather watch the innocent die than compromise their selfish upward mobility. 

Those with integrity are blacklisted out of the profession while the most evil, such as Reinhardsen, are protected and promoted. This needs to change. Reinhardsen never did his job as Petroleum Geo-Services ASA CEO and President, and he is not doing his job as Chairman of the Board of Directors at Equinor. Reinhardsen has never commented nor protested the many critical articles written about him and PGS employees even though employment contracts have non-disparagement clauses. Why not? I contend that he was a principal in a conspiracy to defraud and illegally terminate a foreign worker whistleblower.




Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

Norway’s StatOil Corruption Perception Delusion and Moral Turpitude (21 March 2018)

Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

Petroleum Geo-Services #PGS #CEO #Pedersen and the Management of Gang Rape (28-Oct-2017)

Open Letter to Petroleum Geo-Services ASA Board of Directors (18-Jun-2017)

Petroleum Geo-Services ASA (@PGSNews) CEO Reinhardsen Perverting the Course (1-Jun-2017)

The Society of Exploration Geophysicist (SEG) Should Investigate the Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Reinhardsen Cabal (17-Oct-2016)

Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

The Crimes of Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen (4-Sep-2016)

Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

The Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) Should Expel Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen (11-Oct-2015)  

Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen Should Resign 2 (20-Sep-2015)  

Norway PGS ASA, Equinor ASA

Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) CEO Jon Erik Reinhardsen Should Resign (6-Sep-2015)



Business Ethics Geo-services Human Resources marine seismic Marine Seismic Market Marine Seismic Operations Whistleblower

Shearing the Trough in Marine Seismic Streamer Acquisition with Nodes

Ocean Bottom Node Seismic Acquisition Challenges High-end Seismic Streamer Acquisition

History is so important. It has been said that the three most important words in the English language are “remember, remember, remember.” 

Chances multiply when you take them.

Since May 2015, MarineSeismicSurvey (MSS) blog articles have mostly focused on the marine seismic streamer market as a gauge of the health and trend of offshore geophysical exploration.  However, marine seismic streamer activity can no longer be considered singularly in such analysis.  The growing ocean bottom seismic (OBS) market, being forged by ocean bottom node (OBN) technologies, must be taken into account moving forward.  The percentage share of OBS in the marine seismic survey market has been increasing over the past decade, and some analysts are predicting that OBS will command a 30% marine seismic survey market share by 2020 with its continued rise.  This is remarkable for several reasons.  The plunge in oil prices in mid-2014 significantly impacted marine geophysical exploration.  However, marine geophysical exploration has historically been a boom or bust business defined through a litany of bankruptcies, mergers, and acquisitions.  Oil prices have always been cyclic.  Therefore, the trend and buoyancy of the marine geophysical exploration survey industry remains a good indicator for the overall trends and health of the offshore oil and gas industry. 

Marine seismic surveys, in simple terms, map the subsurface points between a source and receiver(s).  For some time, the most time-efficient and cost-effective way to map these points is through narrow azimuth (NAZ) streamer acquisition.  Standard NAZ marine seismic acquisition is where source(s) and streamers are towed together behind a single vessel.  It is principally the cost of the seismic vessel and seismic in-sea equipment that determines the price of a survey.  Surveys are priced on a day rate, square kilometer rate, or the number of these “mid-points”, or common depth points (CDPs) mapped.  Because each source, almost always an air gun blast or “shot”, maps to the number of receiver sensors located on the streamer cables, there has been an incentive to tow as many streamers as possible to reduce time and costs of marine seismic surveys.  To facilitate this, newer marine seismic streamer vessels have steadily become larger and more powerful.  They are also more expensive to equip and operate.  OBS acquisition has been slower and more expensive method.  However, OBS is seen to provide better data quality.  There have been notable technology innovations introduced into the marine seismic streamer market during the past decade to improve data quality.  Similarly, more powerful computing power has improved final data quality and imaging of marine seismic streamer acquisition.

The marine seismic streamer market has always been tenuous and competitive.  In late 2013, CGG acquired Fugro GeoScience’s marine seismic streamer fleet.  Fugro exited the marine seismic streamer market before the mid-2014 plunge in oil prices.  However, they retained their OBS capability as a joint venture with CGG which is Seabed GeoSolutions.  OBS data was regarded as “better” because it was derived from multi-component (2-4) sensors, whereas seismic streamer data sensors were single component.  One of the problems with marine seismic streamer data was the loss of recorded bandwidth which correlates to depth that sources and streamers are towed.  This loss of bandwidth is known as a “ghost notch” caused from upcoming energy cancelling down-coming energy from the water surface.  In 2007, a dual-sensor towed streamer was introduced into the market that could rival OBS data quality.  In 2009, the first dual-sensor 3D survey was carried out, ushering in an industry wide embrace of “broadband” seismic streamer data.  Another way to acquire broadband seismic data from single-sensor streamers is through varying the depth of the streamers and then applying sophisticated data processing algorithms.  In 2013, a 4-component streamer was introduced into the market. As vessels got larger and towed larger spreads, there also became a need for improved streamer control equipment. 

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

Steve Jobs

We are witnessing a seismic change in consumer behavior. That change is being brought about by technology and the access people have to information.

Howard Schultz

While there have been remarkable innovations and advances in marine seismic streamer acquisition technologies and techniques, advances have also been made in OBS that are together transforming marine geophysical business model paradigms.  In a competitive market, innovation is essential.  However, conservative concession operators have shown a reluctance to pay any premium for such innovations.  Within the MSS blog article, Toward a New Horizon in the Marine Seismic Streamer Industry (24-January-2018), we reminisced about Schlumberger’s seismic acquisition entity, WesternGeco (WG)’s, history and their contributions to the marine seismic industry.  Schlumberger’s CEO, Paal Kibsgaard, announced that the company would exit the marine and land acquisition businesses in January 2018.  The reason essentially boiled down to the return on investment developing and deploying innovative technologies.  The MSS blog article, Upstream Exploration and the Paradox of Choice (5-June-2015), describes how the operator competitive bidding process discourages more expensive innovative proprietary technologies until they are commoditized and offered by a variety of service company providers.  An example of this is in the variety of solutions offered for marine broadband streamer acquisition.  Broadband is commoditized, the specific techniques and equipment used are distinct and vary in equipment and operational costs.

On 15 November 2018, it was announced that relative newcomer, Shearwater GeoServices (Shearwater), had completed the acquisition of the marine seismic acquisition and operations of WG.  Shearwater’s portfolio now includes marine seismic streamer, as well as ocean bottom seismic (OBS) exploration services.  On 27 December 2018, seismic streamer player, Polarcus, announced their winning a combined towed streamer and ocean bottom node (OBN) contract that they will perform cooperatively with SAE Exploration.   Earlier, 7 December 2018, ocean bottom node player, Magseis, acquired Fairfield’s Seismic Technologies data acquisition business to become Magseis Fairfield.  These moves in late 2018 have redefined the marine seismic industry.  Both Magseis and Shearwater are both relative newcomers to their respective principal markets.  Through their acquiring additional marine data acquisition resources, they are now both dominant players.  Shearwater added seven (7) marine seismic streamer vessels to their fleet, as well as three (3) multipurpose source and OBS vessels.  MagSeisFairfield will also have a dominant position in the OBS/OBN market.   

Schlumberger made a decision to exit the data acquisition game.  It has been my position since my first blog post article, The Seismic Vessel Over-Capacity Problem (5-May-2015) that the marine seismic streamer market provides a snapshot of the trends and health of offshore development and overall oil and gas spending and growth.  Both Schlumberger (of which WG was a part) and Fairfield will continue to have a presence in providing seismic data processing, imaging, and multi-client (MC) products and services.  Both Schlumberger and Fairfield are innovators of proprietary technologies in marine seismic acquisition and are currently pursuing claims of patent infringement against their rivals.  Schlumberger’s is challenging ION streamer control technology.  Fairfield’s recent claim of patent infringement of their OBN acquisition technology by Seabed GeoSolutions (SG) are current examples.  Both Shearwater and MagSeisFairfield will quite possibly be in sole possession of cutting edge proprietary data acquisition technologies. 

A century ago, petroleum – what we call oil – was just an obscure commodity; today it is almost as vital to human existence as water.

James Buchan

I think frugality drives innovation, just like other constraints do. One of the only ways to get out of a tight box is to invent your way out.

JefF Bezos

The plunge in oil prices in mid-2014 led most seismic streamer acquisition vessel owners to reduce the number of operating vessels to adapt to the reduced offshore exploration opportunities.  In the near-term, this took a large fleet of capable vessels and equipment off the market.  With reduced demand for oil exploration, seismic streamer vessel fleets have been decimated.  The marine seismic acquisition equation has changed significantly.  Over-capacity in the marine seismic streamer vessel market exists when the number of vessels (streamers) in the market is greater than the demand for data acquisition surveys that will employ such vessels.  In a robust demand market, larger fleets could be deployed strategically to minimize costly uncompensated transit times between surveys.  Equipped streamer vessels are expensive to maintain.  The objective is always to keep vessels working and reduce transit time.  If the marine seismic vessel is on-site, but idle – or on standby – for a variety of reasons, the goal of the vessel owner is to be compensated for the idle time by the contractor.  Of course, the operator/contractor also wants to minimize their incurred expense when vessels are not acquiring data (which meets the contractor data requirements) in the (contract) acquisition business model.  The marine seismic streamer fleet had been steadily adding vessels capable of towing larger streamer spreads, which also meant reduced survey times.  Larger spreads complete surveys in less time.  In a market with reduced opportunities it is even more difficult to keep fleets working steadily and profitably.

In spite of all of these factors, reducing survey time and cost to operators, especially during a time of reduced oil prices, survey cost is the principal consideration.  In times past, in areas of robust exploration, multiple seismic vessels could be working in the same area.  This was problematic for high quality seismic data acquisition.  The sources used by the different survey vessels would impact the seismic data.  Seismic interference, as it was referred to, occurred when the source signal from another survey vessel polluted the recorded records from the primary survey.  Expensive time-sharing agreements would compel seismic vessels to cease data acquisition while the other recorded to reduce seismic source interference.  However, there are now seismic data processing techniques which can separate out unwanted seismic signal, thus again reducing idle time and expense once caused from seismic source interference.  In fact, such data processing has been refined enough to allow surveyors to intentionally overlap source interference.  As mentioned earlier, the points being mapped are essentially the midpoints between the seismic source and receivers.  Adding sources in acquisition and overlapping sources for deblending in data processing is now an offered solution which again reduces survey time and cost, but increases potential vessel idle time.

Geophysical survey customers are cost conscious consumers and are, for the most part, risk adverse and not aggressive using innovative technologies that increase survey costs.  However, geophysical survey customers seem willing to try new technologies and techniques that decrease survey costs.  In such a competitive environment, customers can often get the benefit of both new technology and techniques without a premium cost.  The incentive for vessel owners is to keep the vessels as busy as possible to reduce loss from idle time.  All of these factors do not easily explain the rise in OBS/OBN marine seismic market share so much as the decimation of the marine seismic streamer fleet.  Marine seismic streamer acquisition is still the most time efficient marine seismic acquisition technique.  In times past, offshore project development required that oil prices be above $70 USD/bbl.  This value is not firm, but any trading value of over such an arbitrary threshold provides more opportunities for investment in seismic surveys.  Most frontier exploration initiates with 2D (single streamer) marine seismic surveys.  This data can then be used to evaluate the area and plan subsequent 3D (multiple streamers) marine seismic surveys, which in turn define targets for offshore drilling.  4D marine seismic streamer acquisition is used over existing reservoirs to improve oil recovery.  4D programs are intended to replicate the source and receiver positions of previous 3D surveys and detect changes over time and determine optimal drilling locations. 

The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.

Bill Gates

Predicting oil prices is anyone’s guess.

Soren Skou

In the current market (with oil prices trading below the threshold value for profitably), developing new fields is prohibitive.  OBS/OBN acquisition can focus on developed or trafficked areas where streamer acquisition is hindered by obstructions or other hazards and risks that exists when towing a 1100 m x 8000 m (or larger) streamer spread 5-15 m below the sea surface.  OBS/OBN exploration programs can be more focused on quality over quantity of CDPs.  In other words, getting more oil and gas from already developed fields where there is existing infrastructure in place is less risky than exploring in remote expansive areas.  The improved data processing deblending techniques provide the ability to acquire marine seismic data with multiple overlapping sources.  Add to this more sophisticated interpolation algorithms means new acquisition source-streamer configurations can be employed to reduce survey time and costs.  Less in-sea equipment also has many operational advantages.  Towing wider spreads with fewer streamers can save on fuel and reduce the number of streamer control and positioning equipment to monitor and maintain.  Of course, from a health and safety perspective, reduced maintenance means less risk exposure by offshore workers.

OBN seismic data acquisition is becoming more efficient and less costly to deploy and is now poised to challenge the high-end marine seismic streamer market.  OBS/OBN technology is equipped with multicomponent sensors that can collect full azimuth seismic data.  The step change advances in OBN include longer battery life in nodes and faster automated deployment.  Much the higher cost of OBS/OBN is attributed to time efficiency, where as much of the expense for marine seismic is the large and powerful streamer vessels themselves.  OBN technology can acquire 4D seismic data, as well.  OBN surveys will take market share away from high-end marine seismic streamer surveys, especially as oil prices remain below the offshore development threshold price.  In this cost sensitive environment, cost effective 3D exploration employing a combination of three (3) or more sources and seismic deblending data processing techniques will be attractive for frontier exploration.  Marine seismic streamer and OBN will battle for acquiring data to reach untapped regions of existing developed fields.  This is what I believe will shape the marine geophysical data acquisition market.  As has always been the case, oil prices will continue to control marine seismic market.  Also, as has always been the case, innovation that best solves the problems of customers will win the day.    The plunge in oil prices in mid-2014 significantly impacted marine geophysical exploration.  Marine seismic will remain a boom or bust business defined by bankruptcies, mergers, and acquisitions until there is a paradigm shift in how innovation is embraced by marine seismic survey customers.

Keeping customers is about the experience, and the employees control the culture and temperature of the business. Never forget that.

Steve Wynn

At its heart, engineering is about using science to find creative, practical solutions. It is a noble profession.

Queen Elizabeth II