From success with the Mangetti-1X exploration well to contract awards and partnership agreements, below is a compilation of the latest headlines in the E&P space. 

Activity headlines

Mangetti Well Finds Hydrocarbons Off Namibia

The TotalEnergies-operated Mangetti-1X exploration well offshore Namibia found hydrocarbon-bearing intervals in a separate system to the Venus discovery, field partner Africa Oil Corp. said Feb. 8. 

The deepwater Mangetti-1X prospect in Block 2913B, in Petroleum Exploration License (PEL) 56, achieved a secondary objective of successfully intersecting and appraising the northern area of the Venus accumulation. Mangetti has the potential to add to the recoverable resources in Block 2913B. The joint venture (JV) partners are working to determine the next step in the evaluation process, Africa Oil said.

“The positive results of the Mangetti-1X well present us with a new fairway opportunity, potentially adding a new recoverable resource base on Block 2913B. Our involvement in Block 2913B continues to be exciting, with further work underway to understand the potential of Mangetti, alongside the Venus-2A appraisal well, currently drilling,” Africa Oil President and CEO Roger Tucker said in a press release.

The block is in water depths of 2,450 m to 3,250 m. Acquisition of 3D seismic in the southern area of Block 2913B is progressing with the aim of evaluating additional drilling targets.

TotalEnergies operates the block with 40% interest on behalf of partners Africa Oil with 31.1%, QatarEnergy with 30% and NAMCOR, the Namibian state oil company, with 10% interest. On the closing of a January 2023 agreement between Impact Oil & Gas and TotalEnergies, Impact will hold a 9.5% carried interest.

Contracts and company news

DOF Wins Baleine FPSO, FSO Installation Work

Altera Infrastructure awarded DOF a contract to install two floating units for the Eni-operated Baleine Field offshore West Africa, DOF announced Feb. 12. 

Under the contract, DOF will install an FPSO and a floating storage unit (FSO), along with seabed mooring systems, flowline between FSO and FPSO and associated equipment for the field offshore Cote d’Ivoire.

DOF’s scope includes project management, engineering, transportation, installation and hook-up of floating units in the field. The company plans to mobilize Skandi Skansen, a new generation, high powered anchor handling vessel designed for field installation operations, for the project.

DOF’s offices in Bergen, Norway, and Aberdeen, U.K., will handle project management and engineering. Offshore operations are planned to start in the third quarter of 2024.

TotalEnergies Takes on 75% of Tungsten Explorer

TotalEnergies is creating a new JV with Vantage Drilling International that gives it shared ownership of the Tungsten Explorer drillship.

Under the deal announced Feb. 6, the JV will purchase the drillship from Vantage, with TotalEnergies paying $199 million for a 75% interest in the JV owning the rig. Vantage will own the remaining 25% interest. The JV will contract Vantage to operate the Tungsten Explorer for 10 years.

TotalEnergies has already used the Tungsten Explorer, fabricated in 2013, for exploration and development activities in Namibia, Cyprus and Congo.

TotalEnergies Chairman and CEO Patrick Pouyanné said in a press release that the partnership enables the company to hedge deep offshore drilling costs and that the JV will provide the company with both value and flexibility. 

Vantage Drilling CEO Ihab Toma said in a press release that the proceeds from the sale will “completely deleverage our balance sheet” while providing a long-term revenue stream.

ONGC Awards Shearwater 2 Surveys

Shearwater SW Tasman
Shearwater’s SW Tasman will carry out an OBN survey offshore India. (Source: Shearwater GeoServices)

India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC) awarded Shearwater GeoServices Holding AS a pair of projects.

The SW Tasman will carry out operations for an ocean bottom node (OBN) survey off the coast of India, according to a Feb. 6 release.

On Feb. 8, Shearwater announced a contract for a 3D seismic survey project in the Cauvery Basin, located off the east coast of India. Set to begin in the early months of 2024, the project will cover a 4,600 sq km area in the Bay of Bengal, with the SW Empress carrying out the survey. 

​​ Feb. 8, Vår Energi Well Control Scope

AGR, part of the ABL Group, said Feb. 6 it was awarded a long-term contract to provide blowout and well control studies and associated services for Vår Energi activities on the Norwegian Continental Shelf.

Under the framework agreement, AGR will provide services within blowout contingency planning, well control emergency response, casing magnetization service and general transient flow analyses.

The contract will run for five years, with options for two one-year extensions and will initially support a seven-well drilling campaign. Work under the agreement will be delivered by AGR’s well control and blowout contingency Norwegian operation.

Shell Taps ABL for Project Software

ABL said Feb. 8 Shell has contracted for its master data build and optimization software Effio, to support a number of its large-scale newbuild projects including LNG Canada, Crux and Jackdaw. 

Effio is a cloud-based master data build, ETL (extract, transform and load) and optimization software.

As part of ABL’s scope of work with Shell, Effio has been deployed on LNG Canada and one of Shell’s Canada-based shale gas projects ahead of further global deployment across new projects.

ABL’s asset integrity management teams in Aberdeen and London are managing the project from the supplier side. The company has not disclosed the value of the contract.

Diamond Announces Rig Contracts 

Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc. said Feb. 8 BP has extended the Ocean BlackLion by two years and Serica Energy will use the Ocean Patriot for plug and abandonment (P&A) work.

The Ocean BlackLion’s contract extension, valued at about $350 million, begins in September 2024 in direct continuation of the rig’s current contract for operations in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico (GoM).  

Serica Energy (U.K.) Ltd.’s two-well contract for P&A in the U.K. North Sea is estimated to begin in March 2024 and continue for approximately 60 days. The contract represents more than $10 million of additional backlog, excluding mobilization. 

Petrobras Completes STP Stakes Purchase 

Petrobras announced Feb. 8 it has wrapped up its acquisition of interest in a trio of blocks offshore São Tomé and Príncipe.

Petrobras originally announced the deal in December. Following completion of the deals, the new stakeholders in blocks 10 and 13 are operator Shell with 40% interest, Petrobras with 45% and ANP-STP with 15%; and in Block 11 operator Shell with 40% interest, Petrobras with 25%, Galp with 20% and ANP-STP with 15%.

The deal marks Petrobras’ return to exploration offshore Africa as the company diversifies its portfolio.

Shells Signs Danos for Logistics Support

Danos announced Feb. 6 it will support Shell Exploration and Production Co.’s upstream operations under a new planning and scheduling contract.

Under the agreement, Danos will oversee the scheduling of offshore projects and logistics for Shell’s construction, coatings and maintenance activities.  

Helix Announces Contract Awards

Helix Energy Solutions Group announced a host of contracts on Feb. 6.

Trident Energy do Brasil Ltda. has extended Helix’s decommissioning contract by 12 months, with the extension expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2024 at rates in line with the improved well intervention market. The original contract began in late 2022 offshore Brazil in the Campos Basin and uses the Siem Helix 1 riser-based well intervention vessel and a 10K intervention riser system.

Helix and Siem Offshore have signed six-year charter extensions for both Siem Helix vessels, with the Siem Helix 1 term extended through December 2030 and the Siem Helix 2 term extended through December 2031. 

The Helix Producer I contract has also been extended by one year, to June 1, 2025. Since 2016, it has been located at Green Canyon Block 237 in the deepwater U.S. GoM, producing oil and gas through the existing Phoenix Field subsea infrastructure. 

Acoustic Data Wins SonicSync Contract

An unnamed major oilfield service company awarded Acoustic Data a multi-million-dollar order for SonicGauge Wireless Monitoring Systems in Iraq, Acoustic Data announced Feb. 6. 

“Our SonicGauge technology will be deployed by slickline across a substantial number of assets to provide real-time data acquisition for a multi-year duration,” company COO Jesse Tolley said in a press release.

AI-Backed Pipeline Tech Firm Launches

Following investment by Charps LLC and Sonomatic Ltd., Houston-based PipeSense anticipates rapid growth in its first full operational year, PipeSense said Feb. 12.

Acquired from advanced leak detection company ProFlex Technologies, PipeSense uses advanced artificial intelligence (AI) analysis techniques to provide individually tailored solutions to address pipeline operational challenges.

Charps, a U.S.-based pipeline construction and maintenance contractor, has invested in the management, deployment and R&D of PipeSense, and non-destructive testing inspections and integrity specialist Sonomatic has invested in hardware development and software support. 

TGS Partners with GVERSE GeoGraphix

TGS announced Feb. 7 a partnership with GVERSE GeoGraphix along with updates to its Well Data Analytics platform.

TGS said the strategic partnership with GVERSE GeoGraphix is expected to provide an integrated solution that allows geoscientists to easily access and integrate TGS licensed well data within the GVERSE GeoGraphix software suite. 

This partnership will enable geoscientists to quickly identify and integrate well data required for structure and stratigraphic analysis, mapping and geosteering projects, TGS said.

On Feb. 8, TGS announced its Well Data Analytics platform now features well economic models and data. The newly added dataset allows real-time delivery of well economic statistics, providing users with valuable insights into oil and gas asset performance based on highly accurate well data and well-specific cost models. 

Asso.subsea’s Ariadne cable laying vessel. (Source: Sulmara)

Sulmara, Asso.subsea Start Collaboration 

Sulmara said Feb. 7 it signed a multi-year master service agreement with Asso.subsea to collaborate on work globally.

Glasgow-headquartered Sulmara will support Asso.subsea during cable installation operations, with the company’s experts providing accurate survey and positioning of vessel and subsea assets.

Sulmara will also help Asso.subsea understand the seabed prior to installation as part of the burial assessment process.