Snake River Oil and Gas, the oil and gas exploration company that hopes to reboot Payette County's optimism over gas drilling, has picked up 44 additional leases from the State of Idaho, adding 1,900 more acres for the company to explore. The leases, sold at auction, went for $4,450 to Snake River, the only bidder.
Snake River has already negotiated hundreds of other leases with landowners.
But before they begin drilling, Snake River has contracted with two firms, one from Louisiana and another from Texas, to perform what they call "vibroseising," as chronicled in the current issue of BW.
"The vibroseising will last approximately 10 seconds. We'll pause for three seconds and then start shaking again," said engineer Brett McNeill of Gulf Coast Permits. "We probably won't run these in intervals more than three minutes each."
Vibroseising is a unique process involving something called "geophones," long, black cables attached to 12 metal stakes driven into the ground. When bunched together, the cables resemble a tangle of Christmas tree lights. A separate set of seismic cables, crisscrossing the geophone cables, send the sound waves into the Earth's crust. The cables are fed the seismic waves from a "vibe truck," about the size of a fire engine, which drops 3-foot by 6-foot metal pads to the ground that shake the Earth. The sequential sound waves shake the ground and dart through the Earth's crust, each wave bouncing back when it hits a formation. The images are then transmitted to a separate receiver truck, parked on an elevated parcel of land and connected to an antenna similar to a radio tower. The receiver truck collects the signals, creating the sonogram-like images.
The vibroseising, expected to begin by the third week of August, will be spread out over 50 square miles in Payette County, testing more than 31,000 acres.