ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) has successfully drilled and tested the PTU-15 and PTU-16 development wells for the Point Thomson project on Alaska’s North Slope, ahead of the year-end 2010 target.
The two wells were drilled to a measured depth of over 16,000 feet. The shore-based rig drilled directionally under the Beaufort Sea to the targeted gas reservoir more than 1.5 miles offshore.
“The successful drilling and testing of these wells represents a significant accomplishment and demonstrates we are delivering on our commitments,” said Alaska Production Manager Dale Pittman. “Many Alaskans contributed to this milestone, completing work ahead of schedule in a safe and environmentally responsible manner.”
Point Thomson is a remote natural gas and condensate field located on Alaska’s North Slope, approximately 60 miles east of Prudhoe Bay. It is estimated to hold about 25 percent of the North Slope’s discovered gas resources.
Concurrent with the drilling of these two development wells, activities are also focused on engineering and environmental permitting which are critical for project development. To date about $1.5 billion, including more than $730 million in the last two years, has been invested in Point Thomson.
The Point Thomson project includes gas cycling facilities designed to recover hydrocarbon liquids and re-inject natural gas back into the reservoir, making Point Thomson the highest-pressure gas cycling operation in the world. The Point Thomson reservoir is abnormally pressured in excess of 10,000 psi.
“The project is providing jobs and investment in Alaska,” said Pittman. “We are continuing to work with the State of Alaska to resolve outstanding issues in order to maintain the pace and momentum of Point Thomson development. Point Thomson gas is critical to the success of an Alaska gas pipeline project.”
Over 150 companies have been working to safely advance development of the field in an environmentally responsible manner.
Preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement and design work on the facilities (known as Front End Engineering Design or “FEED”) are now well advanced.