Aker BP drills duster near new satellite field in Norwegian Sea

Oil company Aker BP has drilled a dry exploration well and encountered gas column in an appraisal well near and on Ærfugl field in the Norwegian Sea, offshore Norway.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) said on Tuesday that Aker BP, the operator of production license 212, concluded the drilling of a combined exploration and appraisal well, designated 6507/5-8, near and on Ærfugl. The remaining licensees are Statoil, DEA Norge, and PGNiG Upstream Norway.

It is worth reminding that the plan for development and operation for the Ærfugl field was approved by the Norwegian authorities last week. The development entails subsea tieback into the Skarv FPSO.

Back to well results, the directorate said that the well was drilled about one kilometer from the Skarv field in the northern part of the Norwegian Sea. It was drilled to a vertical depth of 3,660 meters below the sea surface and was terminated in the Lange formation in the Lower Cretaceous. The well will now be permanently plugged and abandoned.

This was the eighth exploration well in production license 212, which was awarded in the 15th licensing round in 1996. It was drilled by the Deepsea Stavanger drilling rig which will now perform well workovers on the Skarv field, where Aker BP is also the operator.

The NPD added that the well was not formation-tested but extensive data acquisition and sampling has been carried out.

As for the targets, the primary exploration target was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks in the Lower Cretaceous (the Lange formation) as well as to investigate the type of petroleum, reservoir pressure and possible communication with the Skarv field.

The well encountered the primary exploration target with a total of about 45 meters of aquiferous sandstone layers with poor to moderate reservoir properties. The sandstone layers contain traces of hydrocarbons.

The secondary exploration target was to delineate Ærfugl and collect data in the reservoir rocks on the field in the Upper Cretaceous (the Lysing formation).

In the secondary target, an approximate 25-meter gas column was encountered, of which 13 meters make up the reservoir of sandstone layers with good to very good reservoir quality.

According to the NPD, the preliminary estimate of the size of Ærfugl is now between 27.6 and 46.8 billion Sm3 of recoverable gas.

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