Photo: Valaris JU-107 on location at Buffalo-10. Source: Carnarvon

Carnarvon presses on with Buffalo drilling operations

Following the kick-off of drilling operations at the end of December, Carnarvon Energy is pressing ahead with drilling operations at its Buffalo-10 well located offshore Timor-Leste.

After several months of delays, Carnarvon finally started drilling the Buffalo well at the end of December 2021, using the Valaris JU-107 jack-up rig. The rig drilled the top hole section following a slight delay caused by a tropical weather system and operations involving the installation and cementing of the Conductor, which provides the structural foundation for the well, followed.

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In an update on Thursday, Carnarvon informed that, since the last report, the Conductor was installed and cemented in place, and the 17 ½” hole was drilled down to section total depth of around 804 metres Measured Depth (MD).

Set and cement the 13 3 /8” casing and install wellhead, after which the rig will drill ahead in 12 ¼” hole to approximately 2,800 metres MD before setting the 9 ⅝” casing. No hydrocarbons are anticipated to be intersected in this drilling section.

The Buffalo-10 well is being drilled offshore Timor-Leste within the TL- SO T19-14 Production Sharing Contract in a water depth of approximately 30 metres with a target depth of approximately 3,500 metres. Carnarvon is the operator of the licence and Advance Energy is its partner.

The well is being drilled to test for the presence of commercial quantities of high-quality light oil that is expected to lead to the early re-development of the Buffalo field.

Carnarvon’s mid case recoverable volume estimate is 31 million barrels (gross, 2C contingent resource). With the minimum economic field size estimated to be significantly lower than the mid-case estimate, there is a strong likelihood the Buffalo-10 well will confirm an economic project. Accordingly, Carnarvon’s drilling plans provide for the Buffalo-10 well to be retained as the first production well in the redevelopment program.

As a result, Carnarvon and Advance are working on plans to compress the timeline to the first production once the Buffalo-10 well confirms a commercial oil resource. These plans include engaging with the industry for the supply and installation of suitable equipment to produce the oil.