Location Geldsackplate
Interests Hansa 50%, ONE 50%
Operator Hansa
Status Exploration
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H&L Blocks

Location Blocks H15-18, L1-L5 (Licence B20008/71)
Interests Hansa 20%, ENGIE 40%, Wintershall 40%
Operator Wintershall
Status Exploration & Appraisal
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The Geldsackplate licence forms part of the greater GEms area (Gateway to the Ems) together with the adjacent N04, N05, N07c and N08 licences offshore Netherlands.  The GEms is an extension of the basal Rotliegend play recognised in both the 4Quads and H&L acreage immediately to the north.

“As part of our GEms play, Geldsackplate consolidates our position over this basal Rotliegend Findorf play that holds significant low risk prospectivity.  The potential of this acreage could only have been recognised by re-working old data with an open mind and leveraging our knowledge from H&L and 4Quads.”

Bert Clever
Country Manager Netherlands & Germany


The GEms area is situated approximately 20 km north west of the island of Borkum offshore Germany and its western boundary follows the German-Dutch median line, recently confirmed by the supplementary Ems-Dollart Treaty executed in October 2014. The water depth ranges from 10 m to 25 m. Directly adjacent to the west are the Dutch GEms N05 and N08 licence areas where Hansa is operator with 30% working interest post participation by ONE and EBN. The Geldsackplate licence is bounded to the north and north-west by the Hansa H&L and 4Quads licence areas.

Current Ownership


Hansa Hydrocarbons



Licence History

In June 2015, Hansa was awarded a 100% interest in and operatorship of the Geldsackplate licence following a spontaneous exploration licence application. In October 2016, Hansa farmed out 50% of its interest in the Geldsackplate licence to Oranje Nassaue Energie.

Facts and numbers


Hansa awarded licence as operator

500 km²

of 3D seismic reprocessed

Zero wells

Drilled to date on 3D seismic (Ruby to be first)


The prospectivity identified in the GEms area is the Lower Rotliegend Findorf play of the Elbe sub-group. The reservoir interval in this area is younger than the 4Quads and H&L Havel Sandstones but bears many similarities. The reservoir consists predominantly of fluvial and aeolian facies deposited in topographic lows related to the Base Permian Unconformity, sourced from the Lauwerszee Trough to the south.

Several wells within the region have encountered the Findorf Sandstone interval up to 35 m in thickness. The two wells within the Netherlands GEms licence area encountered the Findorf reservoir, but were located sub-optimally for reservoir development at the distal end of the facies and consequently, historically the key risk in the GEms area was considered to be reservoir development. However, Hansa’s propriety seismic inversion of the released 3D volumes have enabled the reservoir interval at the wells to be calibrated to the seismic volumes and the sands mapped directly. As a result, a number of structurally simple low risk prospects have been identified across the GEms acreage with an unrisked mean gas in place volume in the order of 2 tcf.

Work Program

The Geldsackplate licence has an initial three year term with a drill or drop decision at the end of the term. The work commitment comprises geological studies and the acquisition and reprocessing of existing 3D seismic surveys. The reprocessing results have successfully enabled the geophysical discrimination of the Findorf sand over the key prospects. The unified, merged and balanced reprocessed volume has undergone seismic inversion which has allowed for better discrimination of the Findorf sands and improves the delineation of the Base Permian Unconformity.

The reprocessed and inverted volumes were interpreted over the course of 2015 and 2016. The preferred prospect for a first well was determined to be the cross-border Ruby prospect which is to be drilled in 2017. Several further drilling locations have been matured for follow on exploration drilling in the event of Ruby successfully opening up this basal Rotleigend play.

Development scenarios

In the event of success, gas would most likely be evacuated via the existing subsea T-piece in the NGT pipeline, approximately 20 km to the south west. This would avoid the need for any beach crossing on the Waddenzee islands. The proximity of the potential developments in the 4Quads area to the north and the H&L area to the east of the GEms area presents the opportunity upon success for strategic synergies for optimising development and infrastructure schemes for the play and region as a whole.