McMoRan spuds ultra-deep gas wells

McMoRan has spudded a number of wells in its Gulf of Mexico shallow water drilling portfolio, all of which are targeting ultra-deep and deep-gas reservoirs.

Offshore staff


NEW ORLEANS -- McMoRan has spudded a number of wells in its Gulf of Mexico shallow water drilling portfolio, all of which are targeting ultra-deep and deep-gas reservoirs.

This month, McMoRan spudded the Davy Jones offset appraisal well on South Marsh Island block 234, 2.5 mi (4 km) from the discovery. The well is drilling to 29,950 ft (9,129 m) TD to test sections up-dip of the discovery. Earlier this year, McMoRan logged 200 net ft (61 m) of pay in multiple sands in the ultra-deep discovery, production liner was set, and the well was temporarily abandoned. Flow testing is expected within 12-18 months.

The Blackbeard East ultra-deep exploration well, currently drilling below 11,000 ft to 29,950 ft (3,353 to 9,129 m) proposed TD, is targeting Middle and Deep Miocene sands seen below 30,000 ft (9,144 m) in Blackbeard West, 9 mi (14.5 km) away. The well is on South Timbalier block 144 in 80 ft (24 m) of water.

McMoRan’s Lafitte, scheduled to spud later this year, will test similar objectives to the Blackbeard East well. Lafitte is on Eugene Island block 223 in 140 ft (43 m) of water.

The company says the data it has received to so far from its ultra-deep wells on the shelf confirm its geologic model, which correlates the objective sands below the salt weld in the Miocene and older sections to the productive sections seen in deepwater discoveries.

“The first quarter of 2010 was one of the most exciting periods of our company’s history,” say James R. Moffett and Richard Adkerson, McMoRan’s co-chairmen. “The initial results from our Davy Jones well are promising and extend the geologic basin from the deepwater, opening up multiple high-potential exploration prospects on the shelf of the Gulf of Mexico. We congratulate our entire team for their execution of our strategy to unlock the values we believe exist at depth in the shallow waters of the GoM. We look forward to an active period in 2010 and beyond as we define the potential of this new exploration frontier.”

In addition to Davy Jones and Blackbeard West, McMoRan says it has identified 15 ultra deep prospects in shallow water near existing infrastructure. Future plans include the John Paul Jones prospect north of Davy Jones.

Meanwhile, on the deep-gas front, the Blueberry Hill offset appraisal well on Louisiana State Lease 340 has been drilled to 23,585 ft TVD (7,189 m). It did not hit pay sands similar to those seen in the previous sidetracks. However, the company intends to sidetrack the well to a location southwest to 24,000 ft (7,315 m) proposed TD. On Hurricane Deep, McMoRan plans to re-drill a previously uncompleted sidetrack to 18,450 ft (5,624 m) deep. The well is on South Marsh Island block 217.

The company’s deep-gas exploration portfolio for this year includes Boudin on Eugene Island block 26 in 20 ft (6 m) of water and Platte in Vermillion Parish. The wells will be drilled to proposed TD of 23,050 ft (7,026 m) and 18,700 ft (5,700 m) respectively.

4/20/2010

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