STAVANGER, Norway – A wildcat well drilled 12 km (7.4 mi) from Statoil’s Aldous Major South discovery in the North Sea has found only small quantities of oil.
The semisub Transocean Leader drilled well 16/2-9S in 116 m (380 ft) water depth on Aldous Major North, a separate structure in the northern part of the PL 265 license. Samples taken from the well proved a thin oil column of up to 8 m (26 ft) in the Upper Jurassic (Draupne) formation.
Reservoirs rocks and quality were much poorer than expected, according to the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate. Small-scale formation tests revealed limited flow properties.
However, partner Det norske oljeselskap points out that the oil was encountered within the depth interval of the oil column in Aldous Major South, which supports prior analysis of a regional continuous oil accumulation in blocks 16/2 and 16/3.
The partners are therefore considering further exploration drilling on Aldous Major North in 2012 in order to clarify potential in other parts of the structure.
“Statoil has previously communicated that the combined Aldous Major South and Avaldsnes discoveries may constitute an oil structure of between 500 and 1,200 MMbbl of recoverable oil equivalents, and we stand firm on this estimate,” said Gro G. Haatvedt, Statoil’s senior vice president for exploration on the Norwegian continental shelf.
Following completion of operations, the rig will return to Aldous Major South to drill appraisal well 16/2-10.
“An appraisal well on Aldous Major South demonstrates that we have great faith in the area’s potential and that the partnership would like to see speedy clarification of the total resource potential in order to secure the rapid development of this discovery,” Haatvedt added.
Statoil operates PL 265 in partnership with Petoro, Det norske oljeselskap, and Lundin.