Category Archives: Exploration

Oil and gas exploration opens off North coast

Mike Dinsdale
Friday, November 9, 2012 9:27

The sea off Northland‘s entire west coast has been opened up for oil and gas exploration, something the Government says could pour up to $2 billion a year into the economy and create thousands of jobs in the region.

Energy and Resources Minister and Whangarei MP Phil Heatley yesterday welcomed the Government’s starting the process for awarding oil and gas exploration permits in seven onshore and three offshore blocks around the country. The offshore areas include the Northland/Reinga Basins, which stretch from the entrance to the Manukau Harbour, up Northland’s west coast to above Cape Reinga in the Tasman Sea.

A survey by Crown Research Institute GNS Science found the Reinga Basin could hold the most promising oil and gas fields in New Zealand.

Mr Heatley said the potential benefits could be game changers for Northland: “Down in Taranaki oil and gas industry provides over 5000 jobs and puts $2billion a year into the economy. Taranaki provides a great model of how safe and responsible oil and gas exploration can happily work side by side with primary industry and tourism.

“Oil and gas finds in Northland could be worth even more, and provide just as many jobs as those in the Taranaki because the Reinga Basin has been tagged as one of the most promising fields in New Zealand. But Northlanders will never know for sure until experienced companies are allowed to explore. If they find something, locals can then have an informed debate about whether we allow them to go after it.”

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment had started consulting iwi and councils, and he encouraged iwi and councils to participate. “Their feedback ensures that areas of sensitivity are carefully considered before the areas to be tendered are finalised,” Mr Heatley said. No schedule-four conservation or World Heritage sites would be included in the areas for exploration.

But Te Runanga o Te Rarawa chairman Haami Piripi said his iwi was not happy with the proposal and felt any consultation would be a “facade”.

“There’s nothing from the exploration regime that will benefit iwi, other than possibly some jobs in the extraction process. The Government is going ahead without first dealing with the big issue, the customary interest iwi have in this resource,” he said.

“We have a legal opinion saying iwi do have a customary interests in oil and petroleum resources. The Waitangi Tribunal issued a report that recognised that Taranaki iwi have an interest in their petroleum resource, but that has been rejected by the Government.

“So we say we legally have a customary interest there, but the Government is trampling on those interests by ignoring them. It will be a facade consultation.”

He said regardless of what iwi thought, the Government would ignore their concerns if they interfered with its plans. “But we will raise our objections.”

Northland Chamber of Commerce head Tony Collins welcomed the move, saying the region needed the jobs and opportunities exploration could provide. “If you look at Taranaki it’s been a positive thing there and it should be positive for Northland.

“There’s always a balance between risk and reward, but if they use best practice for extraction the chances of anything going wrong are very, very minor,” Mr Collins said.

“This could actually create a lot of opportunities for iwi. They could become involved and use it to help lift the aspirations of their people.”

National Oilwell Varco Gives $905,000 to UH’s Subsea Engineering Program

left to right: UH Cullen College of Engineering Dean Joseph Tedesco, Charles N. Grichar, NOV senior vice president/technology development, Matthew Franchek, founding director of UH’s subsea engineering program.

Laura Tolley
ljtolley@uh.edu

November 6, 2012-Houston

National Oilwell Varco (NOV) is giving $905,000 to the University of Houston’s subsea engineering program to further research initiatives and develop a computational laboratory.

NOV’s gift will be used to establish the National Oilwell Varco Computational Engineering Laboratory and to conduct contractual research for UH’s subsea engineering program and NOV.

The computational lab will be used to perform detailed computational calculations on complex subsea equipment that must operate under high-temperature and high-pressure oil and gas conditions that occur in ultra-deep subsea reserves.

The lab also will support the subsea engineering curriculum and students, enabling them to complete capstone design projects using the latest in computational subsea engineering tools.

Recently, UH received the state’s approval to offer the nation’s first subsea engineering graduate program, which will teach the scientific and technical skills necessary to create the first generation of formally trained subsea engineering specialists. UH already offers a certificate program in subsea engineering, which also is the only such program in the United States.

“NOV has made an important investment in UH’s efforts to build a premier graduate program in subsea engineering. We are grateful to NOV for recognizing the value of this ambitious energy initiative,” said Matthew Franchek, founding director of UH’s subsea program and a mechanical engineering professor.

“The subsea engineering graduate program is part of UH’s ongoing efforts to support the area’s energy sector,” Franchek said. “With NOV’s help, this program will produce students with the skills needed to overcome the unique challenges of deepwater exploration.”

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved UH’s proposal to provide a graduate subsea engineering program, which is expected to begin in fall 2013.

Formed in partnership with the world’s leading energy engineering companies, the master’s program will include classroom lectures and hands-on software education for subsea systems design. Recognized experts in the industry will teach the courses.

Offshore oil and gas reserves are increasingly important sources of energy. Some experts believe that billions of barrels of oil and trillions of cubic feet of natural gas lie within federally controlled waters in the Gulf of Mexico alone. But these massive reserves lie underneath 10,000 feet of water, presenting unprecedented engineering challenges such as freezing temperatures, corrosive seawater and immense water pressure.

A subsea engineer is responsible for the design, installation and maintenance of the equipment, tools and infrastructure used in the underwater phase of the offshore oil and gas drilling and production.

Last year, UH began its subsea engineering certificate program in response to the oil industry’s increasing need for these skilled engineers. It was the first of its kind in the U.S. Subsea engineering typically has not been considered a distinct discipline in the U.S., but a number of universities abroad offer degree programs in the field.

The new subsea graduate program will dovetail into UH’s growing petroleum engineering program, which two years ago established an undergraduate degree program in addition to its graduate curriculum.

About the University of Houston

The University of Houston is a Carnegie-designated Tier One public research university recognized by The Princeton Review as one of the nation’s best colleges for undergraduate education. UH serves the globally competitive Houston and Gulf Coast Region by providing world-class faculty, experiential learning and strategic industry partnerships. Located in the nation’s fourth-largest city, UH serves more than 39,500 students in the most ethnically and culturally diverse region in the country.

Source

Worldwide Field Development News Oct 27 – Nov 2, 2012

This week the SubseaIQ team added 0 new projects and updated 15 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

N. America – US Alaska

Shells Alaskan Arcitc Drilling Season Comes to an End

Nov 1, 2012 – Shell’s Alaskan arctic drilling program in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas has reached the end of operations date mandated by the government. The company wasn’t able to make as much progress as hoped due to a late start caused by legal, regulatory and equipment issues. The Kulluk (SW semisub) and Noble Discoverer (mid-water drillship) were only able to drill tophole sections at the Sivulliq and Burger-A prospects. Shell plans to resume activities when the sea ice retreats next summer. For the off-season, the Kulluk will be towed to Dutch Harbor and Noble is weighing options for the Noble Discoverer.

Project Details: Burger, SW Shoebill, Cracker Jack

Australia

OMV Announces Milestone at Maari

Nov 1, 2012 – The Maari field, operated by OMV New Zealand, has produced 20 million barrels of oil since startup in 2009. Maari is the largest producing field in the country and is expected to produce for another decade. Production peaked at 40,000 bopd and has slowed to its current rate of 12,000 bopd. OMV plans to drill additional development wells into what it hopes are untapped accumulations in the field. If the additional wells are successful they will help stabilize the natural decline in production.

Project Details: Maari

N. America – US GOM

Dalmatian South Discovery Confirmed

Nov 2, 2012 – Dalmatian South, operated by Murphy Oil and located in De Soto Canyon block 134, has been confirmed as an oil discovery by partner Ecopetrol. The discovery is Ecopetrol’s third in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico since 2011 and the second of 2012. The Noble Jim Day (DW semisub) drilled the initial exploration well and subsequent sidetrack in 6,394 feet of water. Hydrocarbons were confirmed through electric logs and fluid samples. Dalmatian South lies 6-miles to the southeast of the main Dalmatian field. Production startup from Dalmatian is planned for 1Q 2014 through a tieback to the Petronius platform.

Project Details: Dalmatian

Africa – West

GE Lands Lianzi Contract

Nov 1, 2012 – GE Oil & Gas was awarded a $165 million contract to supply subsea production equipment to Chevron‘s offshore Lianzi project located between Angola and the Republic of Congo. The contract covers the supply of seven trees, nine subsea control modules, topside and subsea controls distribution equipment and vertical connection systems. The first tree is scheduled to be completed in 4Q 2013. Lianzi lies at a depth of 2,950 feet and will be developed with a subsea production system tied to the BBLT platform via a 27-mile heated flowline.

Project Details: BBLT

Rialto Updates Operations in CI-202

Nov 1, 2012 – In a report issued by Rialto Energy, the company announced the completion of the 200+ day Gazelle Field drilling campaign in block CI-202 offshore Cote d’Ivoire. Rialto feels that the field has been adequately appraised and is in the process of reviewing possible development solutions. The company continues to review 3D seismic data covering the entire block. Several new targets have been identified and are being evaluated for inclusion in the 2013 exploration and appraisal drilling program. Vantage Drilling’s Sapphire Driller (375′ ILC) has been contracted for the 2013 program which includes three firm wells with two options. In addition, Rialto intends to commence a farmout process in 4Q 2012 to identify partners to participate in and fund the exploration and appraisal program.

Project Details: Gazelle

Chevron Awards FEED Contract for Lucapa

Nov 1, 2012 – Chevron subsidiary Cabinda Gulf Oil Company Limited awarded WorleyParsons and INTECSEA a FEED (front-end engineering and design) contract regarding the Lucapa oil field in Angola’s Block 14. The field is envisioned to be developed via subsea production and injection wells tied back to an FPSO, all in roughly 4,000 feet of water. The Lucapa development is a joint venture between Chevron, Sonangol, ENI, Total and Galp with Chevron serving as operator. The contract value has not been released.

Project Details: Lucapa

Afren Brings Okoro East On-Line

Oct 31, 2012 – Afren PLC announced the start of production from the Okoro East field in the shallow waters of OML 112 offshore Nigeria. Drilled form the existing Okoro wellhead platform, the Okoro-14 development well was drilled with the intention of establishing early production from the East field – discovered in January 2012. The well has been completed and tied into the Okoro FPSO at a stabilized rate of 5,000 bopd. Okoro-14 is the most productive well drilled in the Okoro area to date.

Project Details: Okoro

S. America – Brazil

PanAtlantic Spinds Bit at Jandaia

Nov 2, 2012 – Exploration drilling is underway at the PanAtlantic-operated Jandaia prospect in block BM-S-71 in the southern Santos Basin. Transocean’s Arctic I (mid-water semisub) is drilling the well in 520 feet of water. The rig is expected to be on location for up to 3 months as it drills to an estimated total depth of 20,100 feet. The well is targeting shallow and deep prospects in the Upper Jureia formation and post-salt Guaruja limestone respectively.

Europe – North Sea

Faroe Relinquishes West of Shetlands License

Nov 2, 2012 – Faroe Petroleum announced its intention to relinquish operatorhsip and interest held in West of Shetland license P1161. Since exploration well 206/5a-3 was drilled in the Fulla prospect the company has been working to establish resource potential and an economical joint development solution for Fulla and the nearby Freya prospect. The area is hindered by lack of access to existing infrastructure and research has confirmed relatively poor oil quality and smaller than expected resource size. Based on these factors, the company will terminate operations in the license and concentrate efforts on its existing West of Shetlands portfolio that includes four provisional exploration licenses that were recently awarded.

Project Details: Freya

Garantiana Partners Move Forward With Sidetrack

Oct 31, 2012 – Bridge Energy, 20% partner in PL 554 offshore Norway, confirmed the plan to move forward with a sidetrack of Grantiana well 34/6-2S. Well 34/6-2A will be drilled by the Borgland Dolphin (mid-water semisub) in an effort to prove additional oil volumes in the formation and determine the oil/water contact. Sidetracking operations will take place once the drilling permit has been approved by Norwegian authorities.

Project Details: Garantiana

Glitne Reaches End of Road

Oct 31, 2012 – After outliving its estimated service life by 9 years the partners in the Glitne field have decided that nothing more can be economically produced from the reservoir. To date, the field has produced 55 million barrels of oil which more than doubles the original estimate. Several new wells have been drilled in the field since production first began in 2001. The final well, drilled earlier this year, demonstrated that Glitne is no longer viable. Oil from the field is produced through the Petrojarl FPSO. Teekay, the vessel’s owner, has been given a six month notice of contract termination. A total of seven wells will be plugged and abandoned in order to close the field.

Project Details: Glitne

Asia – Far East

Liwan Gas Project Remains On Track

Nov 2, 2012 – Husky Oil’s Liwan Gas Project in the South China Sea is approximately 75% complete. The central platform jacket has been constructed and anchored to the seabed. Topsides will be completed and ready for installation in the second quarter of 2013. The Mono-ethylene Glycol Recovery Unit, an important module on the central platform, is nearing completion. Roughly half of the two 49 mile subsea pipelines have been laid from the gas field to the central platform. Liwan remains on schedule for startup by early 2014.

Project Details: Liwan

MidEast – Persian Gulf

DNO Might Double Output at West Bukha

Nov 1, 2012 – Norwegian oil and gas company DNO International announced test results of the recently completed West Bukha-4 well offshore the Sultanate of Oman. On a 54/64-inch choke, the well flowed 7,000 barrels of 39 degree API oil and 15 million cubic feet of gas per day through a test separator. Once the new well is on-line, production from the West Bukha field is expected to achieve 15,000 barrels per day which almost doubles the current rate. Boasting a total depth of nearly 19,700 feet, the well has the longest reach of any drilled well in Oman’s waters. West Bukha-4 targeted a previously un-drilled zone and is the second of a three well Block 8 drilling campaign initiated last year.

Project Details: Block 8

Asia – SouthEast

Additional Discovery Announced at Bertam

Nov 1, 2012 – Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak released a statement via his personal website indicating a significant discovery of additional oil reserves at the Bertam field in block PM 307. The new discovery raises the field’s recoverable resources to 64 million barrels. A preliminary development plan estimates first oil in 3Q 2014 with a max output of 20,000 barrels per day. Lundin Petroleum operates the block with a 75% stake while Petronas Carigali holds the remaining 25%.

Project Details: Bertam

Natuna Gets New Plumbing

Oct 31, 2012 – Hallin Marine completed a subsea infrastructure, umbilicals, risers and flowlines project at the Natuna gas field offshore Malaysia. Under the $3 million contract Halling was responsible for engineering, procurement, installation and commissioning of installed systems as well as the abandonment of some existing infrastructure. Natuna is the largest gas field in southeast Asia with estimated recoverable reserves of approximately 46 trillion cubic feet.

PetroVietnam Secures Funding for Cuu Long Basin Block

Oct 31, 2012 – PetroVietnam secured a 7 year syndicated loan of $140 million from five domestic banks for the development of offshore block 15-2/01 in Vietnam’s oil laden Cuu Long Basin. Talisman Energy operates the block, through the Thang Long JOC, holding 60% interest while PetroVietnam maintains the remaining 40%. The funds will be put towards the development of the Hai Su Trang and Hai Su Den fields located within the block. Talisman indicates the fields will be tied into the existing Te Giac Trang facilities on adjacent block 16-1 with first oil expected near the end of 2013.

Gulf of Mexico: Quest Offshore Sees Bright Future for Deepwater GoM (USA)

The Gulf of Mexico, more than any other major deepwater region in the world, has experienced massive changes in the last five years with long-term implications for the future of the region and the GoM’s supply & demand effects on the global deepwater oil and gas market, Quest Offshore says in its report.

The worldwide financial crisis and subsequent recession, shale gas’ implications on U.S. natural gas prices and the aftermath of the Macondo incident have led to significant changes in the outlook for the region. Despite those overwhelming obstacles, the U.S. GoM’s future is bright with a pronounced recovery expected in all major market segments from drilling to subsea, floating production and marine construction.

Overall spending in the region is expected to increase significantly starting in 2013 up nearly 30 percent to $40 billion. Total expenditures are expected to reach a significant $167 billion in the 2013 to 2016 period. For the first time, 2012 is expected to represent an investment shift with deepwater CAPEX and OPEX spending surpassing that in shallow water. In the under developed ultra-deepwater frontier areas of the region, challenging technical and reservoir conditions will result in increased spending across the board, a trend expected to continue through the foreseeable future.

Five years ago the region was a mix of major and independent oil companies executing both oil and gas standalone and subsea tieback projects. In 2013 and beyond, Quest sees more oil dominance with offshore gas waning. Large international oil companies will play a larger role with the execution of standalone (hub) projects with niche-focused independents looking to infrastructure-led drilling around existing hubs and mega-independents continuing to grow their strategic portfolios in select basins.

In Quest Offshore’s latest market report, Quest Deepwater Review: Gulf of Mexico 2013 and Beyond, the reader will gain a comprehensive understanding of current trends and expectations from one of the leading deepwater basins, the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

Leasing Activity Positive for Deep and Ultra-deepwater

Leasing activity is rightly seen as the furthest leading indicator for prospective oil and gas activity not only in the Gulf but throughout the world. Due to the relatively long lead times between leasing, drilling and production, leasing trends can be expected to provide insight on future activity for years to come. With one-third of active deepwater leases, oil majors and national oil companies are expected to continue to be the driving force for pushing the boundaries of the Gulf of Mexico’s development. Excluding Anadarko and Conoco, all recent frontier projects have been undertaken through operatorship’s of one of the majors or national oil companies (BP, Chevron, Exxon, Shell, Total, Statoil, Petrobras), and we expect this theme to persist moving forward.

Drilling Permitting on an Upward Trend

Drilling permit approvals are showing noticeable increases over the past six months with total counts back to pre-Macondo levels. As of the end of September there have been 78 new exploration drilling permits and 36 new development drilling permits approved over the year.

While raw permit counts are showing positive movement this year, the comparison in permits issued per project highlights the underlying cause for such steep increases in the first half of 2012. Multi-well projects (defined as five or more wells) have seen a record permitting pace since late 2011; examples of this trend include Chevron’s Jack/St. Malo Project, Shell’s Mars B Project, Hess’s Tubular Bells project, Chevron’s Big Foot and most recently the BP’s Atlantis North development, while true wildcat exploration permit numbers are still well below levels seen prior to the drilling moratorium.

Drilling Market Accelerating

Notable discoveries of ultra-deepwater fields in the Lower Tertiary continue to increase the reserve and production expectations for the region. The shift in the Gulf is most apparent in the floating rig market with four operators now possessing 50 percent of the contracted rig fleet. Ninety percent of rigs operating are high-spec and rated for ultra-deepwater.

Robust Outlook for Deepwater Development

Since 2008, the U.S. Gulf of Mexico has undergone a shift in project development mix from heavy in small, independent-operated subsea tiebacks to one that is grounded in fewer, larger subsea tiebacks and high-investment standalone developments developed by international oil companies and mega-independents.

This shift towards fewer, larger subsea tiebacks as well as increased FPS units will have profound effects on the future of the subsea sector as the hardware installed evolves as a direct result of fewer gas developments and deeper, more challenging fields. Subsea equipment manufacturers will experience fewer, but larger scope, award opportunities through the forecast period. As these developments move into more challenging areas, the value of these subsea production packages are expected to increase significantly as HP/HT trees and subsea processing become an enabler for these complex, capital-intensive projects.

This next wave of FPS developments is, for the most part, in ultra-deepwater and in more remote areas not currently connected to shallow water or onshore infrastructure. These developments will materially impact the pipeline and marine construction markets (SURF) as these production hubs are connected to existing export infrastructure through 2016 and beyond. The subsea tieback potential for these hubs is most likely to be seen in the latter half of this decade and into the following, with these latest hubs laying the foundation for the next generation of deepwater developments in the region.

Quest Offshore Sees Bright Future for Deepwater GoM (USA)| Offshore Energy Today.

Worldwide Field Development News Oct 13 – Oct 19, 2012

This week the SubseaIQ team added 0 new projects and updated 13 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

S. America – Brazil

Petrobras Confirms Oil at Carioca Norte

Oct 18, 2012 – Petrobras confirmed the presence of light oil in appraisal well 3-BRSA-1101-SPS, informally known as Carioca Norte, in block BM-S-9 offshore Brazil. Schahin’s Vitoria 10000 drillship drilled the well to a total depth of 18,293 feet. Results from the well are similar to three others drilled in the Carioca area. The partners in the block will now proceed with their appraisal plan which has been approved by Brazil’s ANP.

Project Details: Carioca

Australia

Shell Cuts Steel on Prelude FLNG

Oct 18, 2012 – Shell and its partners announced steel cutting for what will be the world’s first floating liquid natural gas facility. When complete, the Prelude FLNG vessel will be 1,600 feet long and 242 feet wide and will be the largest offshore floating facility ever built. Prelude will be deployed approximately 120 miles off the Australian coast in block WA-44-L serving the Prelude and Concerto fields. FLNG technology will eventually make it economical to develop gas fields that are currently considered too far from shore or to remote to produce. The facility is expected to receive first gas some time in 2017. At peak production the facility will deliver 3.6 million tons of LNG and 400,000 tons of LPG per year.

Project Details: Prelude

Testing Underway at Boreas-1

Oct 17, 2012 – Karoon Gas announced the Transocean Legend (mid-water semisub) has commenced testing of the Boreas-1 exploration well. Upon bringing in the well, a stabilized flow rate of 30.2 Mmscf/d was achieved through a 40/64 choke. The company notes that flow rates were limited by the surface equipment being used. Flow is being assessed from a 229-foot perforated reservoir section in the primary Plover formation at a depth of 16,089 feet. Testing should last five days with the goal of determining the overall deliverability of the primary reservoir which if a part of the Geater Poseidon structure. The next two wells in the drilling program, Zephyros-1 and Proteus-1, are designed to test the east and west flanks of Greater Poseidon Trend.

Project Details: Boreas

Africa – West

FMC Wins Pazflor Subsea Contract

Oct 19, 2012 – FMC Technologies has been awarded a $33 million equipment contract to supply three additional subsea well systems to Total for its Pazflor project offshore Angola. FMC supplied the initial deepwater production systems that have now been in operation for just over a year. Three of the four Pazflor reservoirs contain very heavy, viscous oil and relatively low reservoir pressures. Subsea separation and pumping is the key enabling technology making production of the heavy oil possible.

Project Details: Pazflor

Aker Books Deep Water Angola Work

Oct 17, 2012 – Eni, operator of block 15/06 offshore Angola, awarded a $50 million-contract to Aker Solutions to participate in the West Hub development project. Aker’s work scope will include engineering, procurement, fabrication and supply of 21 miles of static and dynamic steel tube umbilicals, as well as the associated equipment and peripherals. Delivery is booked for 1Q 2014. Once active, West Hub will draw from the Sangos, Ngoma and Cinguvu fields.

Project Details: West Hub

S. America – Other & Carib.

Rockhopper Premier Finalize Farm-Out

Oct 19, 2012 – Rockhopper announced the completion of the Premier Oil farm-out agreement. Rockhopper will receive a $231 million cash payment and Premier will obtain a 60% interest and operatorship of Rockhoppers licenses off the Falkland Islands. The cash payment will see Rockhopper’s share of Sea Lion fully funded through first oil which is expected 3Q 2017. Both companies are fully aligned on the project and expect to have a development concept by mid 2013. The partners are also discussing other Falklands area exploration prospects and a 2014 drilling campaign.

Project Details: Sea Lion

Europe – North Sea

Fram H to Get 4-Slot Template

Oct 19, 2012 – Statoil and its partners have approved the installation of a 4-slot standard template at Fram H North in the Norwegian North Sea. The template is to be tied-back via flexible pipeline to Fram West which supplies production to the Troll C platform. Installation of subsea equipment, pipelines and control cables is planned for summer 2013. The project will help maintain high flowline temperatures to avoid the use of scale wax inhibitors between Fram and Troll C. Estimates indicate Fram H contains recoverable resources of 10 Mmbeo.

Project Details: Troll Area

OMV Buys Stake in Edvard Grieg

Oct 17, 2012 – RWE Dea has elected to sell its 20% stake in the Edvard Grieg development offshore Norway to OMV for $325.2 million. A contingent payment of almost $46 million is available based on the achievement of certain operational milestones. This acquisition gives OMV access to 2P reserves in excess of 38 Mmboe and net production up to 19,000 boepd in 2016 once the field is brought on stream. The Plan of Development and Operations has already been approved by the Norwegian Parliament and all major contracts for drilling and platform construction have been awarded. OMV will share partnership with Lundin (operator 50%) and Wintershall (30%). The agreement is subject to approval by the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and by the Norwegian Ministry of Finance.

Project Details: Edvard Grieg (Luno, Ivar Aasen) Project

Maintenance Delay at Buzzard

Oct 16, 2012 – A scheduled maintenance shutdown of the Nexen-operated Buzzard platform in the UK North Sea has lasted longer than predicted. Nexen’s original plan was to bring the platform back online mid-October but startup will have to wait another week. The delay has resulted in one cargo being dropped from the November Forties loading program. Forties is the main component of the global benchmark Brent which is used to price most of the world’s oil. Buzzard is the largest Forties producing field and issues there tend to provide strong support to Brent oil futures.

Project Details: Buzzard

Eni To Begin Drilling At Goliat

Oct 16, 2012 – Drilling at the Eni-operated Goliat field will begin near the end of October by the Scarabeo 8 (UDW semisub). Appraisal well 7122/7-6 is expected to take 50 days to drill. A 3 ?? year development drilling phase, consisting of 22 wells drilled from 8 subsea templates, will begin upon completion of the appraisal well. The templates will eventually be tied to a circular floating production facility with an integrated loading and storage system. Total development cost of Goliat is estimated at $5.2 billion. After start-up, production is expected to plateau at 100,000 barrels per day.

Project Details: Goliat

Drilling Underway at Spaniards East

Oct 15, 2012 – Drilling operations at the Premier Oil-operated Spaniards East prospect are underway in the UK North Sea. Awilco Drilling’s WilPhoenix (mid-water semisub) is expected to be on location for roughly 40 days. The Spaniards discovery was made in 1989 and flowed 2,660 barrels per day. Spaniards East will test the down-dip potential ?? mile to the east of the discovery well. Successful results from this well could cause the partners in the license to accelerate appraisal plans for the area.

Geite Comes Up Dry

Oct 15, 2012 – Det norske and its partners announced disappointing results at the Geite prospect offshore Norway. Well 7/11-13 encountered Triassic sandstones as planned but were proved to be void of hydrocarbons. The well will now be plugged and abandoned as a dry hole.

Project Details: Geite

Asia – SouthEast

EOC Bags FPSO Upgrade Project

Oct 18, 2012 – Premier Oil awarded a $15 million contract to EOC Limited in relation to the upgrade of FPSO Lewek EMAS. Under the contract, EOC will provide project management, engineering and procurement services for modifications that are necessary to accommodate a subsea tie-back that will link the vessel to the nearby Dua oil field in Block 12E offshore Vietnam. The Lewek EMAS is currently in operation in the Premier-operated Chim Sao field. Once the project is completed in late 2013, the FPSO will produce both fields. All modifications will be made in the field without taking the vessel offline.

Project Details: Chim Sao

Other

Tullow Farms Into Greenland Block

Oct 15, 2012 – Greenland’s Government approved an agreement between Maersk Oil and Tullow in which Tullow will take a non-operated 40% interest in Block 9 located off the nation’s western coast. Maersk Oil will maintain operatorship of the block with 47.5% interest and state oil company Nunaoil will hold the remaining 12.5%. Block 9 is also referred to as the Tooq license and covers an area of 7,333 square miles. Decision to drill an exploration well will be made once 3D seismic is acquired and processed, which will last through 2014.

Worldwide Field Development News Oct 9 – Oct 15, 2012

This week the SubseaIQ team added 0 new projects and updated 7 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field development news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

S. America – Brazil

Petrobras Announces Farfan Discovery

Oct 11, 2012 – Petrobras announced the discovery of light hydrocarbons at its Farfan prospect in block SEAL-M-426 offshore Brazil. Well 1-BRSA-851-SES is being drilled in 8,923 of water by the Deepsea Metro II (UDW drillship). A hydrocarbon bearing zone of 144 feet was discovered at a depth of 18,314 feet and was confirmed by wireline testing and fluid sample analysis. The rig will continue drilling to the target depth of 19,685. Petrobras and partner IBV Brazil hold 60% and 40% interest in the well respectively.

Jupiter Might be a Gas Giant

Oct 11, 2012 – Petrobras released preliminary drilling results concerning appraisal well 3-RJS-683A at the Jupiter prospect confirming a discovery of natural gas and condensate. The discovery has proven a continuous reservoir between 3-RJS-683A and the Jupiter discovery well. A 577-foot oil column has also been detected in rocks displaying excellent permeability and porosity. Further appraisal is needed to determine the size of the field but initial estimates suggest that Jupiter could hold as much as 1 billion cubic feet of gas. To this point, the well has reached a depth of 17,834 feet and drilling will continue in an effort to reach deeper targets.

Project Details: Jupiter

Europe – North Sea

Lundin Announces Albert Results

Oct 11, 2012 – The Bredford Dolphin (mid-water semisub) wrapped up drilling operations at Lundin’s Albert prospect offshore Norway. Well 6201/11-3 was drilled to 9,760 feet and penetrated a thin Cretaceous oil bearing reservoir. The reservoir was found at a depth where the primary target was expected to be encountered. Due to the makeup of the structure and uncertain distribution, an estimation of resources in place cannot be made at this time. A minor column of movable hydrocarbons was encountered in a Paleocene secondary target. Further geophysical and geological studies are required to clarify the potential of the discovery.

Project Details: Albert

Heerema Delivers Andrew Process Module

Oct 11, 2012 – Heerema Fabrication recently completed construction of the new 750 ton process module for BP’s Andrew platform in the UK North Sea. The module was designed to be a “bolt-on” addition to the platform facilitated by the use of two large hinge pins that engage hooks welded to the existing structure. Heerema’s Hartlepool yard benefited from the project by the creation of 180 jobs. In addition, the module was delivered without a single lost time incident.

Project Details: Andrew (UK)

Providence Encouraged by Barryroe Development Modeling

Oct 9, 2012 – Providence Resources recently completed a suite of static and dynamic modeling of the main Basal Wealden oil bearing reservoir interval within the Barryroe complex offshore Ireland. Data from the new models was incorporated with maps made from the recent 3D seismic survey of the area allowing Providence to establish oil recovery factors ranging from 17% to 43%. A modeled recovery factor of 31% over 25 years was achieved based on a development scenario which implemented 41 horizontal production and 22 horizontal water injection wells. Also, the company awarded the Barryroe Concept Development Engineering Study to Procyon Oil and Gas. Procyon will help determine the best development plan for the field based on the different scenarios recently modeled by Providence.

Project Details: Barryroe

Ithaca Adds to Resources in UK North Sea

Oct 9, 2012 – Ithaca Energy has acquired interest in the Cook and MacCulloch fields in the UK North Sea through the acquisition of two Noble Energy subsidiaries. The Shell-operated Cook field is located in block 21/20a and is processed through the Anasuria FPSO. The acquisition will bring Ithaca’s stake in the field to 41.345%. The ConocoPhillips-operated MacCulloch field is found in block 15/24b and was developed through 4 subsea wells tied back to the North Sea Producer FPSO. Finalization of the acquisition, expected in early 2013, will give Ithaca a 14% stake in the field. With the addition of these assets, Ithaca’s net production – largely oil – should increase by 1,100 boepd. The company’s total consideration in the arrangement is $38.5 million.

Project Details: MacCulloch

Asia – Far East

Lufeng FSOU Gets an Upgrade

Oct 9, 2012 – InterMoor completed its first permanent mooring project in the Lufeng field in the South China Sea. The company was contracted by CNOOC to handle project management, engineering, procurement and installation of a new buoy turret mooring system for the Nanhai Sheng Kai FSOU. Installation of the new mooring system should allow CNOOC to get an additional 15 years of service life out of the vessel which was first deployed in 1992. Included in the work scope was the addition of a new 8-inch flexible flowline and riser between the mooring system and LF13-2 wellhead platform. The FSOU was previously anchored in the LF13-1 field but has been moved to the 13-2 field since the upgrade to expand development there.

Australia

Scarborough Partners Still Mulling Development Options

Oct 11, 2012 – ExxonMobil said a decision on how to develop the Scarborough gas field is not likely until the second half of 2013. Scarborough is considered one of the most difficult fields off Western Australia to develop. Water depth in the area is around 4,700 feet and the closest land is 170 miles away. The company is evaluating several options with its joint partner BHP Billiton. Some of the options include building a floating LNG platform or supplying gas to companies that have existing LNG plants.

MEO Ready for Farmout in Joseph Bonaparte Gulf

Oct 9, 2012 – MEO Australia announced its intention to launch the farmout of exploration permit WA-454-P on Nov. 1. The farmout is scheduled to conclude by the end of 1Q 2013. WA-454-P, located in the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf, contains the Marina-1 discovery and the sizable Breakwater prospect. MEO describes Marina-1 as a “gas and probably oil” discovery with 3C contingent gas resources of up to 3.2 Bcf and 3C contingent oil/condensate resources of up to 29.5 MMstb. Gas-only perspective resources for Breakwater are up to 2.7 Tcf with 87 MMstb condensate. In addition, Breakwater is situated in an area near proven gas discoveries that are planned to be developed with floating LNG technology. MEO was awarded WA-454-P in June 2011 and holds 100% interest in the permit.

Project Details: Marina

Worldwide Field Development News Sep 29 – Oct 5, 2012

This week the SubseaIQ team added 1 new projects and updated 17 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

N. America – US Alaska

Shells Announces Drilling at Sivulliq

Oct 5, 2012 – Shell announced the Kulluk (shallow-water semisub) has spud the top-hole section at its Sivulliq prospect in Alaska’s Beaufort Sea. The Noble Discoverer is currently engaged in the same type of work at the Burger prospect marking the first time in over 20 years that two rigs have been drilling off the Alaskan coast simultaneously. Last month Shell announced that its containment dome had been damaged during testing. Because of that, the rigs aren’t able to drill into possible hydrocarbon bearing formations, so for now they are restricted to drilling shallow top-hole sections in preparation for the drilling season next year.

Project Details: Torpedo and Sivulliq

Asia – Far East

Roc Oil Spins The Bit in Beibu Gulf

Oct 2, 2012 – Roc Oil Company‘s exploratory drilling program is underway in southern China’s Beibu Gulf. Well WZ6-12N-1 is being drilled in 90 feet of water to a projected depth of 5,249 feet. Up to four exploration wells well be drilled in the WZ6-12 field by the COSL 931 (300’ ILC). Upon completion of the exploratory phase, a multi-well development program will commence pending National Development and Reform Commission approval, which is expected shortly. The combined drilling program is expected to be completed during 3Q 2013.

Project Details: Beibu Gulf

Australia

Subsea 7 Wins Jurimar Development Contract

Oct 5, 2012 – Apache Australia awarded Subsea 7 a $100 million contract for the transportation, installation and pre-commissioning of subsea umbilicals, manifolds and diver-less tie-in spools for the Julimar Development Project offshore Western Australia. Project management and engineering will be handled from Subsea 7’s Perth office with offshore operations scheduled for 2014. Julimar field will be tied-in to and metered on the Chevron operated Wheatstone platform. First gas is planned for late 2016 and development is expected to continue for 20 years.

Project Details: Wheatstone

N. America – US GOM

Technip Awarded Dalmatian Development Contract

Oct 4, 2012 – Murphy Exploration & Production has awarded Technip a lump sum contract for the development of the Dalmatian field in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Dalmatian is located in the De Soto Canyon area in water depths ranging from 530 to 1800 feet. Scope of the project will include the engineering, project management, fabrication and installation of a gas riser, an oil riser, 23 miles of flowline and associated subsea structures. Technip will also carry out the installation and pre-commissioning of a main subsea control umbilical and infield umbilical with associated foundation and flying leads. Offshore installation is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2013.

Project Details: Dalmatian

Europe – North Sea

Providence Given Green Light For Dalkney

Oct 4, 2012 – The Irish Department of Environment, Community and Local Government awarded Providence Resources a Foreshore License for an area in the Kish Bank Basin offshore Dublin. Specifically, the Foreshore license allows Providence to conduct a 2D seismic survey, a well site survey and drill an exploration well on the Dalkey Island prospect in block SEL 2/11. Providence operates the block on behalf of its partner Petronas, each with a 50% interest. The prospect is a large undrilled structural closure at Lower Triassic level. Prolific Lower Triassic oil producers in the eastern Irish Sea off Liverpool add to the possibility that Dalkey holds oil.

Project Details: Dalkey Island

BP Flips Switch at Devenick

Oct 4, 2012 – Production systems are up and running at BP’s Devenick gas project in the central North Sea. The HPHT project is in the process of ramping up to full production – estimated to peak in 2013 at 100 million cubic feet per day. When producing at the maximum rate, Devenick will add an extra 3% to the UK’s total gas production. BP and partner RWE Dea have invested $1 million in the project which has largely been serviced by UK based companies. Gas is routed from a subsea manifold through an insulated pipeline to the Marathon-operated East Brae platform. It is estimated that the field holds 430 billion cubic feet and will maintain production until 2025.

Project Details: Devenick

Fairfield Optimistic About Dunlin Enhancements

Oct 4, 2012 – To date, Farifield Energy has invested $113.3 million in an effort to revitalize the Dunlin platform. For the first time since early 2000, the operator will be able to use its own independent power generation system to achieve significantly higher and sustained water injection performance. A new fuel gas import system and modified water injection system are expected to boost production of the mature field to around 10,000 bopd. Additional work has included platform and subsea modifications and a recent acquisition of a new 3D seismic survey over the field. The data will help support an exploration program that could result in additional wells being drilled and tied-back to the platform.

Project Details: Dunlin

Aker Grabs Visund Subsea Work

Oct 4, 2012 – Aker Solutions has been awarded a $52.6 million contract by Statoil for the delivery of five subsea trees and 11 control modules to the Visund field on the Norwegian continental shelf. Included in the contract is an option for four additional subsea trees. The contract is a call-off from an existing frame agreement between the two companies signed in 2007. The trees will incorporate Aker’s most advanced subsea technology which will facilitate oil and gas production at a more efficient level and allow greater recovery of reservoir data. Manufacturing of the Visund trees and control modules will take place at Aker Solution’s Tranby and Aberdeen facilities respectively.

Project Details: Greater Gullfaks Area

Total Bringing Atla Online Soon

Oct 2, 2012 – The 1.4 billion cubic meter-Atla gas and condensate field is expected to be brought on line in the first half of October according to Total, the field operator. Atla will be utilized via a subsea template tied back to an existing pipeline between the Skirne subsea facilities and the Heimdal Gas Center. The original exploration well was drilled into the Brent formation and is now being re-used as a production well.

Project Details: Atla (David)

Faroe Secures Rig for Novus

Oct 2, 2012 – Faroe Petroleum contracted the West Navigator (UDW drillship) to drill an exploration well at their Novus prospect during the second half of 2013. The prospect is located in the productive Halten Terrace hydrocarbon region offshore Norway and covers blocks 6507/7 and 6507/10 of production license 645. Partners in the license include Centrica (40%) and Skagen (10%). Primary objectives of the well will be the Jurassic reservoirs of the Garn, Ile and Tilje formations. Novus will be Faroe’s second operated well on the Norwegian continental shelf.

Project Details: Novus

Statoil Says No Increase for Melkoya Capacity

Oct 2, 2012 – Norwegian oil major Statoil announced Tuesday that it and its partners have decided to stop work on a capacity increase at the Melk??ya facility serving the Sn??hvit license in the Barents Sea after they concluded that current gas discoveries do not justify the expansion of the field. Statoil said that over the last 18 months, the Sn??hvit license partners carried out studies for the expansion of gas exports from the field, and that increased capacity would enable the accelerated gas production of increased reserves in the Sn??hvit license. Thorough studies were carried out both on an LNG train and a dew-point facility/pipeline solution, while considerable resources were devoted to finding solutions that could make a capacity expansion possible. However, the license partners have now decided the immediate future will focus on optimizing and upgrading the existing LNG facility at Melk??ya. Statoil, the operator, holds 36.79 percent of the Sn??hvit license, while Petoro, Total E&P Norge and RWE Dea Norge hold 18.4 percent, 12 percent and 2.81 percent respectively.

Project Details: Snohvit

Dana Adds to Stake in Bittern

Oct 2, 2012 – Dana Petroleum recently announced it has taken over operatorship of the Triton FPSO from Hess. The Triton FPSO serves the Bittern, Guillemot West and Northwest, Clapham, Pict and Saxon fields. As part of the agreement, Dana also acquired Hess’ 28.28% stake in the Bittern field bringing Dana’s interest in the field to 33%. The acquisition is keeping in line with the company’s strategy of moving from mainly non-operated to fully operated activities in the UK North Sea.

Project Details: Triton FPSO

Marathon Receives PSA Consent for Vilje

Oct 1, 2012 – Consent has been granted by the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) allowing Marathon Oil to assume operatorship of the Vilje field in block 25/4 of production license 036D. Vilje has been developed via two subsea wells connected to the Alvheim FPSO. Marathon is now the operator of three producing fields offshore Norway. Partners in the field consist of Statoil with a 28.8% stake and a 25.2%-stake for Total. Additionally, the partners have decided to develop Vilje South through a single development well and standard subsea template.

Project Details: Alvheim

More Success with Johan Sverdrup Appraisal

Oct 1, 2012 – Well 16/2-13A, the sidetrack of appraisal well 16/2-13S, has proven excellent reservoir quality and thickness in the PL501 area of the Johan Sverdrup field. Lundin Petroleum indicates results from the well have validated the field geologic model and confirmed a deeper oil-water contact in that area. A comprehensive coring and logging suite was carried out and helped confirm a gross reservoir column of 72 feet. The sidetrack was drilled to a depth of 9,107 feet and now both wells will be plugged and abandoned.

Project Details: Johan Sverdrup

Worldwide Field Development News Sep 22 – Sep 28, 2012

This week the SubseaIQ team added 1 new projects and updated 8 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

Mediterranean

Possible Progress for Gaza Marine

Sep 25, 2012 – The Israeli Foreign Ministry released a report Sunday regarding new developments that concern the future of the Gaza Marine gas field. Gaza Marine is located roughly 18 miles off the coast of the Gaza Strip. BG, with a 90% interest, is the field operator and estimates reserves of around 1 Tcf. Due to Israeli-Palestinian relations, development of the field has been on hold since two appraisal wells were drilled in 2000. The recent report indicates that Israeli and PLA officials have opened a meaningful dialogue in an effort to come to an agreement on a mutually beneficial development plan.

Project Details: Gaza Marine

S. America – Other & Carib.

CX-15 Platform Arrives at Corvina

Sep 25, 2012 – BPZ Energy’s CX-15 platform has been delivered and anchored on location at the West Corvina field. The buoyant tower and topside arrived in Peru via heavy lift vessel September 5. At this point, the tower has been ballasted down and the topsides mated to the hull. Final weld out and hook up of facilities is being completed, after which the Petrex-28 platform rig will be brought on board and assembled. The first well is expected to spud in late October.

Project Details: Corvina

Africa – West

BW Extends FPSO Contract with CNR

Sep 26, 2012 – BW Offshore announced a contract extension with CNR International (C??te d’Ivoire) SARL for the lease and operation of the FPSO Espoir Ivoirien. The firm period of the 4 year extension will carry the contract to 2Q 2017. In addition, the option period has been adjusted and could allow CNR to lease the vessel through 2Q 2036. The total contract value (including options) is $925 million, which is up from the previous contract of $250 million.

Maersk Oil Sees More Success Offshore Angola

Sep 24, 2012 – The deep waters of Block 16, offshore Angola, continue to be good to Maersk Oil and its partners. A recent production test of the Caporolo-1 exploration well flowed a maximum of 3,000 bopd on a 36/64″ choke. Caporolo-1 was drilled to 18,070 feet into a structure adjacent to, but separate from, the nearby Chissonga discovery. Drilling was done by the Ensco 5001 (DW semisub) in 4,567 feet of water. Comments from Maersk Oil indicate that further exploration and appraisal will be needed to determine if the discovery is able to be developed.

S. America – Brazil

Anadarko Cedes Interest in Brazilian Block

Sep 27, 2012 – Anadarko announced it ceded its 30% stake in Brazilian block ES-M-661, part of the BM-ES-24 concession, to operator Petrobras who now maintains a 70% interest. The company relinquished its interest in the block 6 months ago but the transaction received the Brazilian National Petroleum Agency’s approval just recently. Petrobras announced in July that the Grana Padano well, located in ES-M-661, was a heavy oil discovery. Anadarko still maintains its interest in two other blocks in the concession.

Drilling Kicks Off at Canario

Sep 27, 2012 – Drilling at Vanco’s Canario prospect is underway. Canario is located in block BM-S-63 and is being drilled by Transocean‘s GSF Arctic 1 (mid-water semisub). The primary target is post-salt turbiditic sands of the Middle Itajai-Acu formation and is expected to be intersected at 10,498 feet. Secondary sandstones in the Upper Jureia formation are being sought as a secondary objective. Total depth for the well is projected to be 15,748 feet. Drilling is expected to take 2 ??? 3 months, at which point the rig will mobilize to the Jandaia prospect in block BM-S-71.

Project Details: Canario

Australia

Production Test Being Planned for Boreas-1

Sep 27, 2012 – Logging is currently being completed and preparations are being made to begin production testing at the Boreas-1 exploration well in Browse Basin, according to Karoon Gas Australia. To this point, interpretation of the data gathered from the well indicates the presence of net pay gas sands exhibiting good reservoir properties. The Transocean Legend (mid-water semisub) is being used to carry out the exploration drilling program which calls for a minimum of 5 wells to be drilled in the area.

Project Details: Boreas

NZOG Commits to Drill Kakapo

Sep 26, 2012 – New Zealand Oil & Gas said it will drill a well at its Kakapo prospect when a suitable rig can be negotiated. Kakapo is located in Permit 51311 about 25 miles off the South Taranaki coast of New Zealand. NZOG was awarded the permit in 2009 and, based on terms, had to either relinquish the permit this week or keep it and commit to drill. As operator, NZOG has a farm-out agreement with Raisama Energy, whereby Raisama will earn a 10% stake in the permit by carrying 20% of the costs for the first well – not to exceed $3 million. A timetable for the first well is expected to be confirmed within the next 6 months.

Project Details: Kakapo

Europe – North Sea

Romeo Spuds in the UK North Sea

Sep 24, 2012 – Noreco announced the start of drilling operations at the Romeo prospect in the UK North Sea. The exploration well is located in block 30/11c of license P1666. Romeo is a fault bound dip closure in a proven Upper Jurassic play. Primary risk to success is considered to be the trap geometry in the formation. Suncor, as operator of the license, has engaged the WilHunter (mid-water semisub) to provide drilling services. Downhole conditions are expected to be borderline HPHT so the well will be drilled as such.

Project Details: Romeo

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