CALGARY, Canada – Ithaca Energy has delivered the first cargo of crude from its newly onstream Athena field in the UK central North Sea.
The crude was transferred from the BW Athena FPSO to the storage tank at the Ithaca-operated Nigg oil terminal in northeast Scotland via the Betty Knutsen shuttle tanker.
Athena is producing around 12,000 b/d of oil, with water injection online to support the production wells. However, only three of the field’s four wells are flowing oil due to a suspected downhole restriction in one of the wells.
Testing has revealed no issues concerning the well integrity or performance of the reservoir in the area of the field drained by the well. The variable flow rates suggest the problem is a blockage in the well’s production tubing.
Diagnostic work is under way to identify the nature of the blockage and the most effective course of action to address it.
Ithaca is evaluating remote intervention methods to restore the restricted well to its full production potential. These include use of existing facilities to hydraulically overcome the obstruction. If they are not successful, a rig-based workover may be needed, probably performed toward year-end.
Elsewhere in the UK sector, Ithaca’s Beatrice and Jacky fields both have experienced downtime recently following action to improve treatment of produced water. Stable production has now been restored.
The Cook field also experienced downtime in April and June due to integrity issues affecting gas treatment and compression equipment on the host Anasuria FPSO. Full production is expected to be restored during the first week of July.
Maintenance shutdowns are scheduled this summer on the Beatrice Area infrastructure (around 20 days) and the Anasuria FPSO (50 days).