El Bibane needs further interventions

Candax Energy has completed a workover designed to reconnect the parted tubing on its El Bibane 3 (EBB-3) well 18 km (11.2 mi) offshore Tunisia in the Gulf of Gabes. The operation started on March 19 and the jackup barge was released on April 2.

Offshore staff

TORONTO -- Candax Energy has completed a workover designed to reconnect the parted tubing on its El Bibane 3 (EBB-3) well 18 km (11.2 mi) offshore Tunisia in the Gulf of Gabes. The operation started on March 19 and the jackup barge was released on April 2.

The workover successfully retrieved the parted tubing from the well. Candax determined that a packer failure and slippage of the entire downhole production string had occurred which caused the original tubing break.

Following the repair, the well was initially restarted via gas-lift on April 12, with evidence of liquids coming to the surface, but flow had to be curtailed due to surface valve problems.

Once the surface valve was reopened the gas-lift pressure remained low and no further liquids were seen on the surface. Subsequent tests suggest the replaced tubing failed, probably at around the same depth as the original break.

Candax says that although the outcome is a disappointment, the reconnection workover was always viewed as a temporary fix to the existing tubing configuration. It was known from the outset that further work would be needed for a permanent solution, and this will now be implemented during Phase 2 of the well interventions.

The company is now focusing on planning Phase 2 of the EBB-3 and EBB-4 well interventions that will replace the entire damaged tubing string and reduce water production, the aim being to restore oil production to a level similar to or above output achieved during mid-2009.

Phase 2 will be a rig-based intervention expected to start mid-year. Until the well interventions are performed, wells EBB-3 and EBB-4 will remain shut-in.

4/26/2010

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