Cooper aiming to re-appraise Hammamet West

Conceptual development studies have been completed for the Hammamet West oil field in the Gulf of Hammamet offshore Tunisia.

Offshore staff

PERTH, Australia --- Conceptual development studies have been completed for the Hammamet West oil field in the Gulf of Hammamet offshore Tunisia.

Worley Parsons, which has been assisting operator Cooper Energy in the screening process, has recommended a small normally unmanned platform exporting oil and gas via a multi-phase pipeline to an onshore terminal. This facility would distribute the processed gas to local markets in Tunisia, with the oil diverted to an offshore loading buoy.

This plan, estimated to cost $2,500-430 million, is similar to ENI’s development scheme for the Maamoura field, 10 km (6.2 mi) south of Hammamet West.

According to Cooper, Hammamet West was discovered in 1967, the well encountering 7 m of oil in Birsa sandstone formation rock. An appraisal well in 1990 discovered a further 192 m (630 ft) of oil in the deeper Abiod carbonate formation, also the source of Maamoura’s oil.

The Abiod was production tested, but the reservoir was presumed tight. However, a review of the well test suggests the Abiod was tested by cementing in the production casing, not the ideal practice for a reservoir that depends on natural fractures for productivity.

Evaluation of the Hammamet West-2 core and image logs has revealed that natural fractures are present in the Abiod, and that a well with suitable drilling technology could be produced at economic rates.

Cooper was awarded 100% of the Bargou exploration permit containing Hammamet West in 2005. Water depth around the field is 50-60 m (164-197 ft).

New 3D seismic is needed to efficiently appraise the field and the internal reservoir architecture, due to limited coverage and poor quality of most of the existing 2D lines. Cooper expects to award a contract shortly to CGGVeritas to acquire and process a 175-sq km (67.6-sq mi) high resolution survey, probably during December.

Following interpretation, Cooper will aim to drill the Hammamet-3 appraisal well in 2011 with multiple objectives, including delineating the Birsa and Abiod formations to improve understanding of oil-in-place volumes and demonstrating the productivity of the Abiod formation via an open-hole production test in a horizontal well.

Perth-based consultants IPSAA have designed the well and test program, which is expected to cost $20-30 million, using a relatively low-cost jackup.

11/16/2009

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