U.S. oil firm Talos Energy has started drilling of an appraisal well at the Zama field, a two-billion barrel find discovered in 2017.
The Zama-2 appraisal well was spud on Thursday, November 29, 2018, marking the start of Zama discovery appraisal program, which will consist of three reservoir penetrations, including two wells and one sidetrack.
The Zama field is located in Block 7 of the Sureste Basin offshore Mexico in the Gulf of Mexico and has a water depth of approximately 540 feet (165 meters). The field was discovered in July 2017, and Zama-1 was the first exploration well drilled offshore Mexico by a private sector operator.
Talos is using the Ensco 8503 rig semi-submersible drilling rig for the program. The rig which was used when the original Zama discovery was made, will now be used for the entire appraisal program, which is expected to be completed by mid-year 2019.
The first well, the Zama-2, will be drilled to the north of the Zama discovery well and will look to confirm the oil-water contact and collect information to better understand the reservoir’s aquifer support. The Zama-2 well will also be deepened approximately 500 meters below the Zama reservoir to test the Marte exploration prospect. This will then be followed by an up-dip vertical sidetrack from the main borehole, which will be cored and a drill stem test (“DST”) will be performed, which is expected in the second quarter of 2019.
The second appraisal well, Zama-3, will be drilled to the south of the original discovery well and will help delineate reservoir continuity and quality in the southern part of the field and will be cored to be better understand the reservoir geology.
Talos has said that the company and its partners plan to spend approximately $250 million, excluding contingencies, in Mexico during this appraisal program while exceeding the National Content requirements of the contract through the exploration and appraisal phase.
Talos Energy’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Timothy S. Duncan, said: “We are excited to enter this phase of the Zama project with our partners. We are also very pleased with the new partnerships formed with local Mexican suppliers. There is a significant amount of Mexican presence in our workforce in the Zama project, both on the rig and in the local communities that support offshore operations and we are proud of the impact this project will have in the local Mexican economy. The timing of the commencement of the appraisal program will allow us to stay on track of our goal, which is to achieve initial production from the Zama discovery in 2022.”
The plan is to develop Zama with three production platforms across the structure. The field will continue to be developed through 2024 when Platform C is expected to be installed. The company has recently hired McDermott for concept and engineering services for the Zama field development project.
Talos is the operator of Block 7 offshore Mexico, which includes Zama, with a 35% participating interest (“PI”). Premier Oil (25% PI) and Sierra Oil & Gas (40% PI) are Talos’s partners in Block 7.
Offshore Energy Today Staff