Noble Energy, Inc. today announced a discovery at the Big Bend exploration prospect in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The well, located in 7,200 feet of water on Mississippi Canyon Block 698, was drilled to a total depth of 15,989 feet. Open-hole logging identified approximately 150 feet of net oil pay in two high-quality Miocene reservoirs.
Charles D. Davidson, Noble Energy’s Chairman and CEO, said, “The discovery at Big Bend is an exciting follow-up to our recent success at Galapagos. The well results appear at least as good as our pre-drill mean resource expectations and de-risked our offset prospect Troubadour. The combination of excellent reservoir properties, fluid characteristics and our high working interest in this project will contribute significant production and cash flow for our business.”
Noble Energy operates with a 54 percent working interest in Big Bend. Other interest owners are W&T Energy VI, LLC (a wholly owned subsidiary of W&T Offshore Inc.) with 20 percent, Red Willow Offshore, LLC with 15.4 percent and Houston Energy Deepwater Ventures V, LLC with 10.6 percent.
Chariot Oil & Gas Limited announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Enigma Oil & Gas Exploration (Pty) Limited, has commenced drilling the first well, 1811/5-1, of its 4 to 5 well drilling program offshore Namibia. Drilling operations began this morning on the Tapir South prospect using the Maersk Deliverer (UDW semisub) drilling rig, with Chariot as Operator.
The prospect has a 25 percent Chance of Success and a mean un-risked prospective resource potential of 604 million barrels of oil. In the event of success, the results of this well will significantly increase the Chance of Success on certain of the Company’s other prospects within the Tapir Trend.
Tapir South (1811/5-1) will be only the second well ever to be drilled in the Namibe Basin. It is located 49.7 miles (80 kilometers) offshore Namibia in the Company’s northern block 1811A, in which Chariot has a 100 percent equity interest. The well is being drilled to an estimated total vertical depth subsea of 16,732 feet (5,100 meters) and, as announced following the Placing of March 20, 2012, this will now include extended drilling time to ensure that one of the deeper identified targets is drilled and fully evaluated. This deeper target is believed to be a carbonate section, age equivalent to the reservoir in recent sub-salt discoveries in the on-trend Kwanza basin offshore Angola. The drilling and logging operations are expected to take approximately 70 days and a further announcement will be made when the well results are known.
The Tapir South prospect is part of the Tapir Trend where three prospects have been identified on a large ridge formed by a rotated fault block containing the potential carbonate target, draped by deep marine sediments with turbidite sandstone levels forming a stack of overlying targets. Tapir South is the southernmost of three culminations on the ridge and forms a focal point for charge migration from an adjacent basin in which excellent oil prone source rocks are believed to be present and currently generating oil.
The second well to be drilled in the Chariot exploration program, Kabeljou (2714/6-1), targeting the Nimrod prospect is now likely to spud earlier than previously reported. The Operator has informed Chariot that it now expects to secure a drilling unit in 3Q 2012.
“We are very pleased to announce the spud of our Tapir South well in the northern license area which marks that start of a 4-5 well drill program running through to the end of 2013. The results of this first well will be invaluable to furthering our knowledge and understanding of the Namibe basin. Owing to the additional funding raised last month we can now fully explore the deeper targets within the prospect and we look forward to updating the market with the well results in due course,” commented CEO Paul Welch.
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McMoRan Exploration Co., a shallow water Gulf of Mexico exploration company, reported yesterday that its Lafitte ultra-deep prospect, which is located on Eugene Island Block 223 in approximately 140 feet of water, has encountered additional hydrocarbons.
The well has been drilled to a true vertical depth of 29,756 feet and has been logged with wireline logs to 29,740 feet. The wireline log results indicated 56 net feet of hydrocarbon bearing sand over a 58 foot gross interval in the Cris-R section of the Lower Miocene with good porosity. Flow testing will be required to confirm the ultimate hydrocarbon flow rates from this zone, which was full to base. McMoRan controls approximately 15,000 gross acres in the immediate area of Lafitte.
The new Cris-R sand interval combined with the 115 feet of potential net pay (250 gross feet) announced previously brings the total possible productive net sands to 171 feet in the Lafitte well. These results enhance the potential of McMoRan’s other acreage in the Lafitte strategic area, including McMoRan’s Barataria and Captain Blood ultra-deep prospects. Barataria (10,000 gross acres) is located westsouthwest of Lafitte and Captain Blood (10,000 gross acres) is located immediately south of Lafitte.
McMoRan plans to apply for a permit to deepen the Lafitte well to a proposed total depth of 32,000 feet to evaluate deeper Miocene and Oligocene objectives. Lafitte is McMoRan’s third ultra-deep prospect to encounter Miocene age sands below the salt weld on the GOM Shelf. McMoRan holds a 72.0 percent working interest and a 58.3 percent net revenue interest in Lafitte. Other working interest owners in Lafitte include Energy XXI (NASDAQ: EXXI) (18.0%) and Moncrief Offshore LLC (10.0%).
McMoRan Exploration Co. is an independent public company engaged in the exploration, development and production of natural gas and oil in the shallow waters of the GOM Shelf and onshore in the Gulf Coast area.
- USA: McMoRan Encounters Hydrocarbon Bearing at Lafitte Well (mb50.wordpress.com)
McMoRan has made a discovery on its Davy Jones ultra-deep prospect located on South Marsh Island Block 230 in approximately 20 feet of water. Drilled by the Rowan Mississippi jackup, the well reached a measured depth of 28,263 feet and has been logged with pipe-conveyed wireline logs to 28,134 feet.
The wireline log results indicated a total of 135 net feet of hydrocarbon bearing sands in four zones in the Wilcox section of the Eocene/Paleocene. All of the zones were full to base with two of the zones containing a combined 90 net feet. The Eocene/Paleocene (Wilcox) suite of sands logged below 27,300 feet appears to be of exceptional quality. Flow testing will be required to confirm the ultimate hydrocarbon flow rates from the four separate zones. The resistivity log obtained on January 10th was the last data needed to confirm hydrocarbons in South Marsh Island Block 230.
McMoRan’s Co-Chairman, James R. Moffett, said, “Davy Jones log results confirm our geologic model and indicate that the previously identified sands in the Wilcox section on this large ultra-deep structure encompassing four OCS lease blocks (20,000 acres) provides significant additional development potential which, upon confirmation development drilling, could make Davy Jones one of the largest discoveries on the Shelf of the Gulf of Mexico in decades. The geologic results from this well are important and are redefining the subsurface geologic landscape below 20,000 feet on the Shelf of the Gulf of Mexico. The results from this well will be incorporated into our models as we continue to define the potential of this promising new exploration frontier.”
McMoRan plans to deepen the well to 29,000 feet to test additional objectives.
McMoRan is one of the largest acreage holders on the Shelf of the Gulf of Mexico and onshore in the Gulf Coast area with rights to approximately one million gross acres including 150,000 gross acres associated with the ultra-deep gas play below the salt weld. Prospects on this acreage have multi-Tcfe gross unrisked potentials and target objective sections on the Shelf in the Miocene and older age sections that have been correlated to those productive sections seen in deepwater discoveries by other industry participants.
McMoRan operates the Davy Jones prospect and is funding 25.7 percent of the exploratory costs and holds a 32.7 percent working interest and 25.9 percent net revenue interest. Other working interests owners in Davy Jones include: Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE: PXP – News) (27.7%), Energy XXI (NASDAQ: EXXI – News) (15.8%), Nippon Oil Exploration USA Limited (12%), W.A. “Tex” Moncrief, Jr. (8.8%) and a private investor (3%).