Norwegian seismic duo ends patent dispute

Two Norwegian geophysical companies, Petroleum Geo-Services (PGS) and Electromagnetic Geoservices (EMGS), have entered into a settlement agreement thus resolving their patent disputes.

On December 16, 2013 EMGS filed a complaint in the United Kingdom against PGS in the High Court of Justice, Chancery Division, Patents Court.

The complaint alleges that the PGS Defendants had infringed EMGS’s European patent EP 1256019 (Refracted Wave Patent). EMGS also initiated a parallel proceeding before Oslo City Court in Norway on April 4, 2014 relating to PGS’ Towed Streamer EM technology for infringement of EMGS’s parallel Norwegian patent, NO 324 454 (the EMGS Patent).

On March 5, 2015, PGS EM Limited filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware against EMGS. This complaint alleges that the EMGS Defendants have, at least by their survey activities in the Gulf of Mexico and on the U.S. outer continental shelf and by their interactions with U.S. customers and their importation of certain data products into the U.S., infringed PGS-owned U.S. patent 6,914,433, titled “Detection of Subsurface Resistivity Contrasts with Application to Location of Fluids”.

According to a joint press release by the companies, these disputes have all been settled by the settlement agreement.

The agreement grants PGS a license to the EMGS patent for operation of its Towed Streamer EM system. EMGS is similarly granted a license to the PGS patent. Both licenses are royalty free and valid world-wide for the validity period of the relevant patent.

The settlement agreement also opens up for joint EM and seismic surveys in the future.

The two companies also said that they both support the validity of both the EMGS Patent and the PGS Patent, and both companies will cover their own legal costs.

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