Shenzi-2 appraisal confirms deepwater find

BHP Billiton's first appraisal well on the Shenzi field, discovered last year in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, has encountered 500 ft of net oil pay in a 1,250-ft gross hydrocarbon column of lower Miocene reservoir sandstones.

BHP Billiton's first appraisal well on the Shenzi field, discovered last year in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, has encountered 500 ft of net oil pay in a 1,250-ft gross hydrocarbon column of lower Miocene reservoir sandstones.

BHP Billiton-operated drillship CR Luigs spudded Shenzi-2 on Sept. 22 on Green Canyon block 653 in water depths of 4,238 ft and drilled it to 25,500 ft TD. Shenzi-2 is 2 mi southwest of the discovery well Shenzi-1, which encountered a gross hydrocarbon column of 465 ft with 140 ft of net pay. The discovery is located along the same geologic trend as the Mad Dog, Atlantis, and Neptune fields.

BHP Billiton Petroleum CEO Phil Aiken said the reservoirs were "appreciably thicker than those encountered in the first Shenzi well" and that the well significantly extended the scale of the oil accumulation discovered by Shenzi-1. Further appraisal drilling will be required, Aiken said, but BHP Billiton will work with its partners to study development options. Following well logging operations and other data collection activities, the partners plan to drill a sidetrack out of the existing well bore.

BHP Billiton operates Shenzi and holds 44% interest, Amerada Hess and BP each hold 28%.

11/12/03

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