Cairn finds gas offshore Greenland

Offshore staff

EDINBURGH, UK -- Cairn Energy has discovered gas while drilling its first exploration well offshore Greenland.

T8-1 encountered gas in thin sands, indicating an active hydrocarbon system, Cairn says. The well has not reached its target depth.

The company has contracted two rigs to drill this well and Alpha-1, both in the Baffin Bay basin, which Cairn describes as of North Sea-scale. Operations started in July.

Greenland is logistically remote. In the event of a well control incident, the other rig with its associated services would be available immediately to drill a relief well, if needed.

The drilling schedule has also been arranged so that at critical junctures, only one rig will enter a hydrocarbon-bearing section at any given time.

Alpha-1 is being drilled to test the Cretaceous Alpha prospect. It had to be side tracked due to mechanical issues in the Tertiary volcanic section. Currently, casing is being set in the volcanics. Cairn expects the target objectives to be reached during September.

The third exploration well in the current sequence will be on the T4 prospect, around 150 km (93 mi) northwest of Alpha and 150 km north of T8. Cairn has still to decide where to drill the fourth well, which depends on the drilling schedule.


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