New seabed samples reveal active Jurassic oil seeps and Mesozoic sedimentary sequences on the Jan Mayen Ridge


TGS and Volcanic Basin Petroleum Research (VBPR) conducted systematic seabed sampling of a 1000 meter high cliff on the Jan Mayen Ridge in September 2011. More than 200 kg of rocks and sediments were recovered from twelve sampling stations.

The new samples give exciting insight into the petroleum geology of the Jan Mayen Ridge. Diverse sedimentary rocks of Mesozoic age (250 to 65 million years) were recovered. Prior to last summer no rocks older than 50 million years had been drilled or sampled in this area. Advanced geochemical analyses of the recovered sediments suggest active seepage of Jurassic oil and a working hydrocarbon system.
A comprehensive project report is available for immediate delivery from TGS and VBPR. The report is highly relevant for the current Icelandic Licensing Round but also for deep water exploration along the European and Greenlandic continental margins.


  • Systematic sampling of a kilometer high escarpment with subcropping sediments
  • Cenozoic and Mesozoic samples recovered
  • Pseudo-well provides stratigraphic tie to seismic data
  • Petroleum seep analysis and age determination
  • Relevant for the current Icelandic licensing round, and the Faroes and West of Shetland basins

Further information from TGS and VBPR