Minor oil shows from Falklands well

Offshore staff

LONDON -- Desire Petroleum will P&A its latest exploration well off the Falkland Islands after delivering only traces of oil.

The 14/15-3 well was drilled by the semisubmersible Ocean Guardian on the Ninky prospect in the North Falkland basin. Currently the well is at TD of 2,620 m (8,596 ft) in the Barremian source rock interval.

According to drilling and wireline logging analysis, the well encountered two sand-prone sections in the upper and middle F2 intervals, at subsurface depths of 2,323-2,334 m (7,621-7,657 ft) and 2,365-2,389 m (7,759-7,838 ft). These sands have a combined gross thickness of 35 m (115 ft). Oil shows were encountered throughout both intervals.

Reservoir quality appears to be generally low in terms of porosity and permeability. A thin interval of around 1.2 m (3.9 ft) at the top of the middle F2 zone is interpreted to be oil-bearing. However, the depositional model suggests these sands are sourced from the east, which means that reservoir quality may improve downdip. And there are indications from the seismic of further sands along strike on the Ninky structural high, which the well did not intersect.

Desire plans to evaluate these opportunities using data from a current 3D seismic acquisition program, co-financed by Rockhopper. To date, the Polarcus Nadia has acquired 1,485 sq km (573 sq mi) of data over Desire’s acreage, with a further 195 sq km (75 sq mi) to follow. The survey should be completed in May.

Priority areas for this campaign are in the East Flank play between Ninky and Rockhopper’s Sea Lion discovery, and over the Ann/Orca South prospect. Processed data from these areas should be available in July: the full, merged data, expected later in the year, will provide coverage over the southern part of the East Flank play and the Helen prospect.

Desire hopes existing prospects will be significantly de-risked using the new seismic data and that new prospects will be identified, particularly within the East Flank play.

On completion of the Ninky well, Desire will have funds of around $37 million – enough to cover its share of rig and vessel demobilization costs, and to complete its share of the 3D seismic acquisition, processing and interpretation – but insufficient for further wells.

The company says it will review all financing options available in order to resume drilling campaign later in 2011, if possible.

04/18/2011

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