South Falklands well finds sub-commercial oil

Offshore staff

LONDON – Noble Energy plans to terminate the 53/02-01 Humpback exploration well south of the Falkland Islands.

The semisubmersible Eirik Raude drilled the well to a TD of 5,136 m (16,850 ft). It encountered non-commercial quantities of oil and gas within various sandstone intervals, including the main APX-200 target.

For operational reasons, it was not possible to obtain fluid samples from any of the hydrocarbon-bearing zones in the well.

Noble’s partner Falkland Oil and Gas Ltd. says it will evaluate the results and assess the impact on prospectivity of the Diomedea fan complex and the remainder of the company’s southern licenses.

According to FOGL CEO Tim Bushell, although reservoir quality proved to be poorer than anticipated, this was the first well in the South Falkland basin to prove oil, and it also demonstrated a working hydrocarbon system within the Fitzroy sub-basin.

Numerous other plays have been identified in this sub-basin, and by using the well results to calibrate 3D seismic data, the partners may be able to map higher quality sands elsewhere.

Following the completion of drilling operations, the Eirik Raude will head to the North Falklands basin to drill a second well on the Elaine/Isobel fan complex. According to operator Premier Oil, there are multiple reservoir targets with potential gross oil resources of 400 MMbbl.

After this well, the rig will spud the Rhea prospect late this year or early next year for Noble Energy, also in the North Falkland basin.

Rhea is a Cretaceous-aged prospect with multiple reservoir targets and potential oil resources of more than 250 MMbbl.


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