Serica aiming to drill Oates

Serica Energy has secured a production license in the central North Sea under the UK’s 25th offshore licensing round.

Offshore staff

LONDON -- Serica Energy has secured a production license in the central North Sea under the UK’s 25th offshore licensing round.

The award covers block 22/19c, in 90 m (295 ft) water depth, around 20 km (12.4 mi) west of Serica’s Columbus gas-condensate field where development studies are in progress.

The licence holds two Palaeocene Forties sand prospects, Oates and Bowers. Oates exhibits a well-defined amplitude response on 3D seismic data, similar to results from Columbus. Serica estimates prospective resources of 180 bcf of gas or 60 MMbbl of oil.

Any drilling success on Oates could enhance the economics of the Columbus development, said Serica CEO Paul Ellis, through, for example, shared use of pipelines and risers.

The license was awarded for a period of up to 26 years, but Serica must drill a well to test the Palaeocene target within the first four years. The company is hoping to do this within the first 12 months, at an estimated cost of $20 million.

BP’s Monan represents the nearest commercial development of a Palaeocene sandstone reservoir, 8 km (4.97 mi) east of the license. Other nearby structures include the Mungo and Huntington oil fields.

06/26/2009

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