Acadian Energy (CVE:ACX) announced Thursday that it is conducting interviews of satellite imaging companies as part of the final stage of due diligence for its New Albany shale oil exploration strategy.
The junior exploration and production company said it will utilize the data from the spectral analysis of satellite images to further confirm oil saturation and "high grade" in its leaseholds, located in the Illinois Basin.
Acadian said that satellite imaging is a method of remote sensing that can help assess the statistical probability of hydrocarbon reservoirs known or suspected to underlie the terrain in a specific area through spectral analysis.
Hydrocarbon seepage is one of the oldest methods of prospecting for petroleum.
The company said analyzing the hydrocarbons will further quantify the oil potential "sweet spots" of its leaseholds identified through the Greenfield oil simulation, recently completed by Fekete Associates.
The hydrocarbon detection will be used as a further source of empirical research to better direct oil exploration in the New Albany shale.
Acadian intends to complete the geosensing analysis of hydrocarbons this spring as part of its 2012 New Albany shale oil drilling project.
The company said the New Albany shale is the primary hydrocarbon source rock for the basin, with nearly four billion barrels of oil production to date.
The New Albany shale oil exploration strategy is part of its plans to drill six cores in the Maria Creek project area of Sullivan County, Indiana, and test all potential zones.
Working with Fekete Associates of Calgary, multiple well scenarios were modeled at Acadian's property, the company said last month, with sensitivity analyses performed to determine their impact on the estimated ultimate oil recovery.
Acadian's Maria Creek project has 1,238 net acres held by gas production with possible oil reserves of one million barrels of oil.
The projected internal rate of return (NYSE:IRR) is 300 percent with payout in 0.59 years, or 78 percent with payout in 1.26 years.
Acadian plans to have a drilling participant package in early summer 2012, it said.