Exploration interest in Australia’s offshore northern region has rebounded in the past year with the award of several new blocks, as companies pursue known gas and oil plays.

The region holds many significant fields including Ichthys, Prelude, Barossa, Evans Shoal, Abadi, Sunrise, Petrel, Cash-Maple and the ageing Bayu-Undan.

The companies that own those fields also have active exploration blocks in the area, with Nopta, the Australian government’s titles regulator, listing a total of 21 in the offshore Bonaparte basin and Vulcan sub-basin.