Valiant set to drill Tybalt, Viola

Valiant Petroleum is close to securing a rig to drill its Tybalt exploration prospect in the UK northern North Sea.

Offshore staff

WOKING, UK – Valiant Petroleum is close to securing a rig to drill its Tybalt exploration prospect in the UK northern North Sea.

Subject to contract finalization, the semisubmersible Diamond Ocean Nomad will drill well in Quad 211 at the end-March, targeting P50 prospective resources of 46 MMboe. If successful, Valiant believes Tybalt would justify a joint development with the company’s nearby Banquo field, which has best estimate contingent resources of 21 MMboe.

Valiant also seeks a rig slot to drill its large Viola structure in the central North Sea this summer, and has further plans for the Ariel and Handcross exploration prospects. The company is a partner to operator Petrofac in the ongoing Don Southwest development in the northern sector. Here a side track of the Area 22 production well has run into difficulties retrieving the downhole completion.

Remedial work to free a long section of stuck tubing has been slow – the difficulty has been exacerbated both by weather-related interruptions and the depth and inclination of the well. However, drilling operations should re-start shortly following a four-week delay, and the well should be completed by end-February. Water injection will start on Don Southwest following the conclusion of drilling. Soon afterwards, gas lift also should be commissioned.

The side track completion will coincide with a planned shutdown on Don Southwest and the West Don field to allow tie in to the pipeline export route via the Lundin-operated Thistle platform.

Valiant adds that Don Fields Phase II is on schedule for completion this year, with the semisub John Shaw contracted for 180 days plus a 90-day option from the end of this quarter. The program is likely to include development of the Horst/Area 6 compartments in Don Southwest through a producer and injector pair, both expected to be commissioned and brought onstream during the second half of 2010.

The partners also intend to drill up to two further appraisal wells on other nearby “compartments” in the field, including a follow-up well in Area A/B to test a thicker Brent sequence away from the original discovery well drilled in 2007. A further rig probably will be brought in to drill a third production well in the southern area of West Don. This could be brought on stream in late 2010.

01/25/2010

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