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Monday, 09 October 2017 07:50

Gazprom Neft makes Ayashsky discovery

Russian gas giant Gazprom Neft has made a new discovery containing 255 million tonne of oil equivalent, about 1.8 bn boe, in place on the Ayashsky block, in the Okhotsk Sea.

The Ayashsky block in the Okhotsk Sea forms part of the Sakhalin-3 project. The block is in the northeastern part of Sakhalin Island’s continental shelf, 55km away from the coast. 

The firm says that "cutting-edge technological solutions" applied to the construction of the well enabled Gazpromneft-Sakhalin to build the prospecting and appraisal well during a narrow window of ice-free period at the Okhotsk Sea, on time and without incident. 

Specifically, riser-free sludge-removal technology made it possible to control the stability of strata surrounding the borehole, as well as eliminating any possibility of geological material entering the marine environment.

Drilling, in 62m water depth, was carried out using a rotary steerable system, which allowed the maintenance of vertical control with automatic corrections. This enabled the use of the most “aggressive” penetration mode, shortening the construction time and minimizing the number of run-in-hole/run-out-of-hole (RIH/ROOH or “tripping”) operations.

Core samples running to 162m were taken from anticipated productive strata (horizons) for the construction of the 2,700m-deep well, with extensive open- and closed- geophysical and hydrodynamic borehole exploration works undertaken. A detailed assessment of these reserves will be prepared by mid-2018.

Gazprom Neft is the operator of the Dolginskoye oil field, at which geological prospecting works are currently ongoing, as well as the North-West block of the Pechora Sea, the Kheisovsky block in the Barents Sea, the Severo-Vrangelevsky block, covering the East-Siberian and Chukhchi Seas, and the Ayashsky block in the Okhotsk Sea.

Thursday, 05 October 2017 08:49

Cue extends BP's Ironbark option again

BP has gained another extension from Cue Energy Resources to decide if the supermajor wants to acquire stake in the Ironbark prospect offshore Western Australia.

Ironbark. Map from Cue.

BP subsidiary BP Developments Australia has already been given several extensions on whether to take 42.5% stake in Ironbark; the last of which was set to expire later this month on 25 October. The new extended deadline is 11 December 2017.

Ironbark is next to BP’s operated WA-409-B permit, less than 50km from the North Rankin platform (North West Shelf LNG) and near the Pluto and Wheatstone LNG infrastructure, which Cue says provides cost effective commercialization options.

“If BP exercise the option over WA-359-P, 50% of the Ironbark well cost will be funded,” Cue Energy said in a statement. “Cue is seeking to secure a partner or partners to join themselves and BP in WA-359-P to drill an exploration well in 2018 to test the Ironbark prospect.”

The Ironbark prospect is a giant Mungaroo Formation prospect that is mapped with an area of up to 400sq km with a best technical estimate of 15 Tcf of prospective recoverable gas resource based on an internal technical assessment performed by Cue Energy.

Wood Mackenzie estimates that the North West Shelf LNG plant and infrastructure will have spare capacity from 2021.

Read more:

Cue extends BP's Ironbark deadline


BP completes Cue Ironbark deal

Monday, 18 September 2017 11:33

Norwest hits at Xanadu-1 off Western Australia

Norwest Energy has encountered hydrocarbon pay at Xanadu-1 offshore Western Australia, and plans to extend drilling operations.

Map of Xanadu, from Norwest.

Xanadu-1 is in permit TP/15, 40km south of Dongara. TP/15 is in the northern Perth Basin about 280km north of Perth.

The shallow water well was drilled as a conventional oil exploration well, designed to test for the presence of hydrocarbons in the Xanadu prospect.

Norwest says drilling operations made excellent progress since the well was spudded on 4 September, and evaluation of the Xanadu prospect is ongoing.

Total depth (TD) reached late yesterday (17 September), confirmed that Xanadu-1 has intersected hydrocarbon bearing reservoirs demonstrated by elevated gas readings, oil shows, fluorescence and cut fluorescence while drilling reservoir section, the company says.

Drilling results have encourage the company and its joint venture partners to commit to running a wireline logging suite that includes pressure testing and fluid sampling. Logging is expected to begin within the next 24 hours.

The JV has a 7in casing string currently enroute to site from the north west, so that if logging results are positive, the well will be cased and suspended in preparation for an extended well test, once planning and approvals are complete.

The partnership has also agreed to extend drilling beyond the base of the High Cliff Sandstone to include the deeper sandstones of the Holmwood Shale, reaching a TD of 2035 mMDRT (TD previously 1863 mMDRT) on 17 September.

“I am extremely pleased to have these early positive indicators of hydrocarbons encountered during the drilling of Xanadu-1. Although further evaluation is required to understand the full potential, these are excellent first results. It’s been a while in the making, and now we have drilled the well,” says Norwest CEO Shelley Robertson.

Permit TP/15 occupies the 3 nm wide state territorial waters of Western Australia, adjacent to Port Denison, and covering an area of 645sq km.

Norwest is the operator of TP/15 with 25% stake. Partners include Triangle (Global) Energy Ltd. (30%), Whitebark Energy (15%), and 3C Group IC (30%).

Read more:

Norwest to drill Xanadu prospect

Norwest to spud Xanadu-1

Norwest completes Xanadu farmout

Wednesday, 13 September 2017 13:45

Video: Prelude hits mooring halfway mark

Shell has completed the installation of eight of the 16 mooring lines of its Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility offshore Western Australia.

Image of Prelude. From Shell. 

In a video, Shell shows the mooring of leg number eight on the largest floating facility ever built, which has made the FLNG storm safe.

The Prelude is situated 200km off the coast of north-western Australia in the Prelude field, an area known for extreme weather conditions.

The Prelude FLNG facility has been designed to produce 3.6 MTPA of LNG, 1.3 MTPA of condensate and 0.4 MTPA of LPG. Prelude is 488m long and 74m wide, and weighs 660,000-tonne when fully loaded.

“The need for this mooring system to work is critical. We could hit the cyclones and this mooring system will hold us in place,” says Damian Wake, Shell offshore installation lead.

To keep the Prelude in place, Shell says that its Prelude project team created one of the strongest mooring systems ever built.

According to the company, deep inside Prelude is a turret that allows the facility to rotate or weathervane. Beneath Prelude, is one of the largest chains in the world with nearly 25,000 links attached to mooring piles drilled deep into the ocean floor.

As the video shows, the connecting of chain number eight of 16 to the seabed for the next 25 years, has made Prelude officially storm safe.

The operation to moor Prelude began with the rigging team making the steep descent into the bowels of the turret. Outside, three tugs held the Prelude in position. A crew on the Deep Orient constructon vessel retrieved the mooring line, while on the Prelude, a giant winch stood by to haul in the chain.

According to SBM Offshore, the turret mooring system’s primary function is to keep the Prelude facility on station, and limit excursions to protect its riser-system, which receives gas from the subsea architecture. Four groups of four mooring lines secure the Prelude FLNG to anchor points at water depths of 250m. The turret mooring system is designed to withstand category 5 cyclonic conditions.

The Prelude FLNG facility is operated by Shell (67.5%) in joint venture with INPEX (17.5%), KOGAS (10%) and OPIC (5%).

Read more:

Video: Prelude FLNG arrives in Browse basin

Prelude FLNG sets sail for Australia

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