Offshore Wind Farm Geophysics

Talk to a member of the team on +44 (0)1352 756196

Benefit from our unique, leading-edge seismic data processing and 3D interpretation workflow imagisTM.

Hydrographic and geophysical surveys are routinely carried out prior to completion of the initial geological ground model for prospective offshore wind farm sites. Both datasets have the potential to contribute valuable information to your understanding of the site. The accuracy and reliability of the hydrographic and geophysical surveys undertaken are critical so that turbine foundations can be located and designed in the most appropriate and cost-effective way.

A high standard of hydrographic data is common, and the expected outputs well defined. However, the quality of geophysical surveys varies greatly, with no agreed industry standard for the type and quality of reporting or data deliverables. Surveys for large offshore wind farm projects can produce Terabytes of high-quality seismic data, but if these data are not properly managed, processed, interpreted, and reported these data are essentially useless to you.

Proper specification of a geophysical survey can make the difference between you receiving blurry low-resolution seismic sections and having a digital database of georeferenced key interface elevation surfaces ready for inclusion in your modelling and visualisation software. Failure to ensure that surveys are properly specified at the outset has led and will lead wind farm developers to spend substantial amounts of additional money on resolving issues that could easily have been avoided.

Depending on your needs and the maturity of your project, we can provide services at any level from legacy data audits to full specifications, tender evaluation, Client Representative support (onshore), geophysical data processing, analysis, and interpretation, and 3D geological Ground Model development.

Our staff have been involved in near-surface geophysical consultancy for over 25 years and we are regarded as the leading independent environmental and engineering geophysical consultancy in the UK and have an international reputation.  RIL staff publish regularly in international, peer-reviewed journals. By having a thorough understanding of the range of inter-disciplinary techniques used in ground investigation, we are well placed to advise on how geophysical surveys can complement traditional investigation methods so that you can obtain the best outcomes from your surveys.

We also offer a CPD-accredited, one-day, corporate facilitated workshop, titled ‘High-resolution Marine Geophysical Investigation for Offshore Structures’. This unique course is essential for anyone working on offshore wind farm developments in a project management, technical engineering, or geotechnical capacity.  For more information, see the marine geophysical workshop webpage.

Reynolds International Ltd (RIL) staff have been providing project management and operational support services for high-resolution, over-water site investigation projects for over 25 years. We have developed substantial expertise in this area so you can be confident that we have the skills and resources necessary for your project.

Call us now on +44 (0)1352 756196 or email so that you can find out without any obligation how you can make offshore wind farm geophysics work for you.

Marine Geophysical Workshop

RIL have developed a one-day corporate workshop titled ‘High-resolution Marine Geophysical Investigations for Offshore Structures’. This unique course is essential for anyone working on offshore wind farm developments in a project management, […]

An example of reprocessed and re-interpreted legacy data.

Legacy Data

Many offshore wind farm developers have already completed geophysical and hydrographic surveys in the early stages of project development or acquired a project from others. The specifications for these surveys may not have been as […]


Specification and Tender Evaluation

It is important that surveys are properly specified so that they yield the information you want, not just what a geophysical contractor wants to give you. Through strict specifications you can ensure that your surveys yield the best data quality and […]


Client Representative Support and Report Evaluation

A key element for Clients is having a suitably qualified and experienced ‘Client Representative’ on board the survey vessel making sure that the best quality hydrographic and geophysical data are collected as per the specification.  […]


Processing, Interpretation and 3D Geological Ground Model Production

Offshore wind farm geophysical surveying has only recently begun to catch up with geophysical processing and interpretation standards […]

What Our Clients Say

CEGS have known of Reynolds International Ltd, previously Reynolds Geo-Sciences Ltd, since the mid-1990s and have utilised their services over the years for specific surveying in the former underground coal and iron ore fields of West Cumbria. As a lead consultant, we have used Reynolds International to successfully locate and define both the underground workings and the mine entries that pose a hazard to the built environment, especially shafts in the iron ore workings.

Additionally, we have also enrolled on the CPD training courses that are organised by Professor John Reynolds and these provide an invaluable update to our professional skills.

We will continue to use Reynolds International as our preferred specialist Geophysical consultancy because of the consistent high professional standards that are applied to every project.

Dennis R. E. Dickins

CEGS, Cumbria

The British Embassy, Bucharest, has been working with Professor John Reynolds, of Reynolds International Ltd, since 2008 in order to ensure that the Embassy’s earthquake and emergency planning is up to date; and that all staff, dependents and the British community, for which the Embassy has a responsibility, are briefed on the causes, the preparations and the relevant actions in the event of an earthquake.

Professors Reynolds’s knowledge, advice and guidance has been invaluable in ensuring that the embassy’s plan is as up to date and in an as workable format as possible.

His knowledge is second to none and his guidance is clear concise and in an understandable format.

B A Davidson – HM Consul

Head of Corporate Services, Bucharest, Romania

The earthquake preparedness training course provided by Professor John M. Reynolds for BAT Romania’ employees during 3 days in February this year was a well designed and tailored course given the high seismic hazard area where Romania is located.

The main aim of the course was to provide our employees with necessary information to help them to reduce their own vulnerabiolity at work, in their out-of-work activities and in their family lives.

I was very pleased with the results of the training and , most importantly, I have received very positive feedback from participants.

I recommend this course for other commercial organizations in Romania or abroad.

Eugen Stan, Business Security Manager

British American Tobacco Trading SRL, Romania

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How much will a survey cost?

It depends completely on the scope of your project and the nature of your target! Whether you are investigating your back garden before putting up an extension, or planning the ground investigation of a city-wide infrastructure project and worried about sink-holes, we will take the same amount of care and attention designing your survey and ensuring you pay no more than you need to to get the results you require. A staged project may be appropriate, where each phase is commissioned only after assessment of the results of the previous phase, so you don’t need to worry about paying for work that you don’t need. We can also advise on suitable contractors for a job so that you can engage them directly under our supervision, and manage their costs yourself.

For jobs upon which we engage contractors for you ourselves, our prices start at about £5,000 and cover our fees and disbursements, including: survey design and specification, identification and engagement of a suitable contractor for data acquisition, our on-site supervision, QC, off-site processing, analysis, interpretation and reporting. Consultancy-only rates can be provided on request. VAT will be added to all prices at the applicable rate.

Don’t forget – investing in a thorough and complete ground investigation at the start of your project could save many times the cost of that investigation in over-engineering, responding to unforeseen ground conditions and overrunning project deadlines futher down the line. A thorough site investigation will play a key role in your project risk reduction measures.

Q: Can I just get some advice? I don’t need a quote right now/I don’t want to pay for a quote

All basic advice and quotes are FREE. We are always happy to discuss options, whether you need a full quote, a ballpark cost for inclusion in a tender or just need to find out whether geophysical surveying is appropriate for your site. If your site is more complicated and you require us to prepare a specification, this will be subject to a charge, but we guarantee that we will never undertake chargeable work without clearing it with you first.

Q: I am familiar with [technique]/it worked well on another site – can I use it on this site?

If you already have an idea of what geophysical technique might be appropriate for your site, let us know. We keep up to date on all developments in geophysical site investigations and may be able to suggest new, alternative and/or complementary techniques. Many techniques that you may be familiar with, such as Ground Penetrating Radar, are very effective in the right conditions, but almost completely useless elsewhere. We will always recommend the most appropriate techniques and survey design for your site and problem. We will make sure that you are happy with the techniques proposed before submitting a proposal, so the final decision is up to you.

Q: How can I integrate the results into my project?

We strongly believe that all our projects should be led by what you need, not what we can provide. If you need your results in a specific format for integration into your own software, just let us know! We can supply paper and pdf maps, 2D and 3D CAD and/or ESRI ArcGIS files, data archives on disk or hard drive, and can set up a dedicated, password-protected ftp folder for you on our own server to facilitate transfer of data and reports. We can also provide advice on the integration of geophysical and geotechnical data within a GIS framework.

Q: My site is abroad – do you work overseas?

We are an international consultancy, and our personnel have worked everywhere from Wales to the Antarctic! We can advise you about appropriate U.K. based contractors, or help you select from local contractors by undertaking a review of available contractors and/or carrying out tender reviews. Our experienced project managers are able to manage your geophysical survey remotely or in-country as you require.

Q: Why do you use contractors instead of doing the site work yourselves?

Unlike other geophysical service providers, we are totally independent of any geophysical contractors. Approaching a contractor directly may result in you getting a survey that is tailored to their in-house skills and equipment, rather than to your site and survey target. We design a survey to meet your needs, then identify contractors who are specialists in the techniques required. We then select one or more contractors from this shortlist through a competitive tender process, ensuring that you get the best service and do not pay over the odds for it. We can employ contractors ourselves, or recommend appropriate contractors for you to engage directly under our supervision.

Q: Why should I use RIL? I have heard that consultants are expensive!

As the old saying goes, you get what you pay for! Using RIL guarantees you a range of benefits:

  • Independent survey design: we are not beholden to any contractor.
  • Independent supervision of the geophysical contractor’s work to ensure the highest data quality.
  • Availability of high-level technical expertise not usually available through contractors.
  • Increased level of analysis not usually afforded by contractors – typically less than 15-20% of a contractor’s costs are attributable to interpretative reporting.
  • Consideration of the use of the data by the Client or his engineers and presentation of information in the most suitable digital formats.
  • Increased peace of mind for the client by having the survey managed by extremely experienced staff including a Chartered Geologist.
  • By engaging RIL as the Client’s Engineering Geophysical Adviser, the latest guidelines for engineering geophysical surveys (McDowell et al., 2002) are being followed.
  • The survey workflow from data acquisition through to interpretative report will be technically robust and the interpretative report will be in plain English with clear descriptions of the work undertaken and how the interpretations have been arrived at. Our report will be written to facilitate peer review, which we welcome.
  • Our final invoice will not be issued until the client is completely satisfied with the final report – this is guaranteed.
Q: I have another question that you have not answered!

Then let us know by calling us on +44 (0) 1352 756196, e-mailing us at or using our contact form.