Shell Oil Co. announced a Lower Tertiary Wilcox oil discovery in the Perdido thrust belt at the company’s Blacktip discovery. The 1 OCS G32954 hit more than 122 m (400 net ft) of oil pay with good reservoir and fluid characteristics and is in Alaminos Canyon Block 380. Water depth in the area is 1,981 m (6,500 ft). The drilling plan for this block and Alaminos Canyon Block 424 (1 OCS G32964) to the south was originally filed in 2012 by Statoil (now Equinor). Shell took over the lease and filed an amended drilling plan in 2018 for the prospect. According to Shell’s plan, as many as 17 tests could be drilled on the two tracts. 

Talos Energy LLC is drilling appraisal well Zama-2 ST1 in Block 7 in the Sureste Basin offshore Mexico. The venture is the second of three planned wells to test the northern limits of the discovery. The well is 180 m (590.5 ft) updip of Zama-2 and approximately 2.1 km (1.3 miles) north of Zama-1. The Zama-2 ST1 logged 266 m (873 ft) of gross true vertical depth pay and confirms a consistent net-to-gross ratio range of 68% to 73% through multiple penetrations. Talos also recovered 217 m (712 ft) of core, with a 98% recovery rate, the longest whole core acquired in a single well in the history of offshore Mexico. Flow was established without stimulation in two separate flow tests and produced a combined rate of 7,900 boe/d, of which 94% was oil and 6% was gas. Water depth was approximately 168
m (551 ft).

A new discovery was announced by Exxon Mobil in offshore Guyana’s Stabroek Block. The Yellowtail-1 well hit 89 m (292 ft) of high-quality oil in a sandstone reservoir. The well was drilled to 5,622 m (18,445 ft). It is in 1,843 m (6,046 ft) of water and is northwest of the Tilapia-1 well. It is the fifth discovery in the Turbot area. A drillship is testing at Longtail-1 and the next planned venture will be Hammerhead-1.

Rathlin Energy has begun drilling at the West Newton prospect in petroleum exploration and production license 183 in East Yorkshire, U.K. The West Newton A-2 appraisal well is in the western sector of the Southern Zechstein Basin and is targeting gas in Kirkham Abbey Shoal and oil in Cadeby Reef. West Newton A-2 has a planned depth of 2,061 m (6,762 ft). The estimated contingent resources within Kirkman Abbey Shoal are 5.3 Bcm (189 Bcf) of gas equivalent. The Lower Cadeby has a gross, prospective resource of 79,100 boe. 

Aker BP announced an oil and gas discovery in offshore Norway’s Froskelar Main appraisal well 24/9-14 S in license 869 in the Alvheim area. The well has proven oil and gas with the gross resource estimated at 60 MMboe to 130 MMboe. The well encountered a total gas column of 30 m (98 ft) and an oil column of 38 m (125 ft) in the Hordaland Group with very good to excellent reservoir properties. A part of the discovery may straddle the U.K.-Norwegian border in the North Sea. Water depth in the area is 120 m (394 ft). Potential recoverable reserves at Froskelar Northeast are estimated at 7 MMboe to 23 MMboe.

A gas and condensate discovery was reported offshore Ghana in CTPBlock 4 by Eni. The Akoma-1X well on the Akoma exploration prospect has an estimated volume between 15.5 Bcm and 18.4 Bcm (550 Bcf and 650 Bcf) of gas and 18 MMbbl and 20 MMbbl of condensate. The discovery has further additional upside for gas and oil that will require further drilling to be confirmed. The well was drilled to 3,790 m (12,434 ft) and is in 350 m (1,148 ft) of water. It hit a 20-m (66-ft) gas and condensate column in a sandstone reservoir interval of Cenomanian age. The well is the first one drilled in the block.

Eni announced a new light oil discovery in offshore Angola’s Block 15/06 at the Ndungu exploration prospect. The new discovery is estimated to contain up to 250 MMbbl of light oil in place. The Ndungu-1 NFW well was drilled in 1,076 m (3,530 ft) of water to 4,050 m (13,287 ft) and encountered a single oil column of about 65 m (213 ft) with 45 m (148 ft) of net pay with 35-degree-gravity oil in Oligocene sandstones with excellent petrophysical properties. Initial results indicated that the well could produce more than 10,000 bbl/d of oil. The Ndungu-1 NFW well is the fourth commercial discovery in the Block 15/06 joint venture exploration campaign. The four discoveries are estimated to contain up to 1.4 Bbbl of light oil in place.

An offshore exploratory test is planned in the Lebanese sector of the Mediterranean Sea in Block 4. According to Total, Block 4 is a less prospective block than 9, but the company plans to use exploration at Block 4 to test the northward extension of Oligocene and Miocene sandstones (Tamar Sands) found in offshore Israel’s Leviathan and Tamar fields. Block 9 also has possible reserves in its carbonate limestone formations, similar in geology to offshore Egypt’s Zohr Field and Cyprus’s Calypso prospect.

Pakistan Petroleum Ltd. has reported a hydrocarbon discovery at exploration well Unarpur-1 ST-1 in the Kotri North Block (Block 2568-21) in the Sindh Province, Pakistan. The well was drilled to 3,938 m (12,920 ft) to test for hydrocarbon potential in the Lower Basal Sand of Lower Goru. Based on wireline logs and drilling results, a completion integrity test was done in the zone, which confirmed hydrocarbons in the Lower Basal Sand. Additional testing is planned.

Santos Ltd. announced results from an appraisal well in Corvus Field at the Corvus-2 well. The Carnarvon Basin well is in permit Area WA-45-R and was drilled to 3,998 m (13,117 ft). The well intersected a 638-m (2,093-ft) gross interval, one of the largest columns ever discovered across the North West Shelf. Wireline logging to date has confirmed 245 m (804 ft) of net hydrocarbon pay across the target reservoirs in the North Rankin and Mungaroo, between 3,360 m and 3,998 m (11,024 ft and 13,117 ft). Gas samples acquired from the appraisal well indicate a significantly higher condensate-to-gas ratio of up to 10 bbl/MMcf and a similar CO2 content of 7%. The well will be plugged and abandoned as planned once logging operations are completed.

New Guinea 
Exxon Mobil announced testing results in a Cretaceous Toro Sandstone reservoir at appraisal well Muruk-2 in petroleum development license 9 in the Highlands Province in Papua New Guinea. According to the operator, the test confirms gas in pressure communication with Muruk-1 ST3. The 3,500-m (11,483-ft) well flowed at a maximum rate of 467,228 cu. m /d (16.5 MMcf/d) of gas during testing on a 52/64-in. choke. Downhole pressure gauges have been installed to monitor the well during the pressure buildup phase to help evaluate the contingent resources in Muruk Field.