LONDON – Work has started on assessing the FPSO design options for the first phase of the Sea Lion development in the offshore North Falkland basin.
Operator Premier Oil had originally planned a TLP linked to an FPSO, but decided to scale back its plan last November following the drop in the oil price. Instead, it opted for a smaller initial development of just the northeast part of the Sea Lion field with a single subsea drill center, using a leased FPSO.
Premier says the existing TLP topsides design and equipment lists are being modified for use with a smaller-capacity FPSO, and results from metocean studies are being assimilated into the FPSO design.
The company is targeting sanction for the first development phase during the first half of 2016, depending on cost reductions achieved and the oil price outlook at that point.
Although the company could probably fund a project of this size itself, it will continue to seek a partner for the development. Subsequent phases, which could involve either more FPSOs or a TLP, will target a further 235 MMbbl of the discovered resource, plus any new discoveries that my result from this year’s exploration.
A rig contracted on a time-share basin by the various Falklands offshore license partners is due to sail into Stanley Harbor soon. Premier is involved in four of the rig’s planned wells.