STAVANGER, Norway – Statoil’s latest frontier well in the Barents Sea has found small quantities of gas.
Well 7220/5-2 on the Nunatak prospect was drilled by theWest Hercules in license PL532, 5 km (3.1 mi) north of the Skrugard oil discovery that will form part of the Johan Castberg development.
The well encountered gas in the Knurr formation at Cretaceous level, but volumes appear to be sub-commercial, and reservoir quality was poorer than expected. Water depth is 398 m (1,306 ft).
Nunatak was the first of four prospects Statoil plans to drill in the Johan Castberg area this year, and was thought to have the highest geological risk. It forms an independent structure in a younger geological formation than Skrugard, which it partly overlays.
Gro G. Haatvedt, senior vice president exploration Norway, said the results will have no bearing on the next three wells. “Whilst it is disappointing to find only gas in Nunatak, we believe in further oil potential in the Johan Castberg area.”
The results will provide valuable data for the development well and subsea solutions for the Skrugard reservoir, added Erik Strand Tellefsen, Statoil’s vice president field development, northern Norway.
West Hercules will next transfer to neighboring license PL608 to drill the Iskrystall prospect (well 7219/8-2) in the same early-middle Jurassic play proven by the Skrugard and Havis oil finds, but at a much greater depth.
Statoil is operator for production license PL532 with an ownership share of 50%. The license partners are Eni Norge AS (30%) and Petoro AS (20%).
In the North Sea,Maersk Giant is about to P&A a well on a prospect southwest of the Gyda field as a dry hole. This was the second well on PL299, awarded to Talisman Energy under the APA 2003 round.
The rig now heads to PL 542 to drill wildcat well 2/1-15 for Det norske oljeselskap.