Oil province emerging close to Sleipner

StatoilHydro has opened a new oil play in the gas-prone Sleipner region of the Norwegian North Sea.

Offshore staff

STAVANGER, Norway -- StatoilHydro has opened a new oil play in the gas-prone Sleipner region of the Norwegian North Sea. Tim Dodson, Senior VP for exploration and Norway, said at ONS today that the recent Dagny and Ermintrude discoveries, both underlying a gas cap, could contain a total of 200 MMboe recoverable.

The company discovered Ermintrude, just north of the Sleipner field, in July 2007, followed by two appraisal wells drilled from the same well bore. Dagny, to the southwest, produced gas when first drilled in 1977.

StatoilHydro had had doubts over the volumes of in-place gas, but over the past three years had been working on a different model of an oilfield beneath a gas cap. That was confirmed this year by an exploration well (15/5-7), drilled down-flank, which encountered oil within a 100 m hydrocarbon column.

The company also suspected communication with Ermintrude, and this was partly confirmed by identical pressure data readings. However, the oil-water contact has still to be established - this must be done, Dodson said, before development planning can start.
"We have identified more oil prospects to the north," he added, "and I am convinced there is more upside potential, including in license PL 303 to the north and west of Sleipner, where we plan to drill another prospect with ExxonMobil later this year.

08/26/2008

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