Diamond rig moving to Sole gas field

Diamond Offshore’s Ocean Monarch rig is preparing to depart Cooper Energy’s Casino Henry gas project in the offshore Otway Basin off Victoria this evening, having completed a successful workover of the Casino-5 production well.

Cooper said on Thursday that the workover met all technical objectives of the work program. Gas production from Casino-5 resumed on April 25 at flow rates in line with expectations.

The rig mobilized from offshore Fremantle to the Otway Basin in February and arrived off Port Campbell to begin the workover of the Casino-5 gas well off Australia in March.

The duration between rig arrival and departure at Casino-5 was 46 days, with operations interrupted on a number of occasions by unusually heavy ocean conditions, Cooper said on the statement.

Gas production from the other wells in the field – Netherby-1, Henry-2, and Casino-4 – has been ongoing during the workover operations.

Cooper Energy is a 50% interest holder and operator of the Casino Henry gas project with other interest holders being Mitsui E&P Australia (25%) and AWE Limited (25%).

According to the company, the Ocean Monarch will be towed to the Sole gas field in the Gippsland Basin offshore Victoria, to drill and complete the Sole-3 and Sole-4 production wells for development of the field as part of the Sole gas project.

Cooper Energy has a 100% interest in Sole, which is being developed to provide a new source of gas supply to south-east Australia in 2019.

The voyage from Casino-Henry to Sole is expected to take approximately 4 days, after which the rig will deploy anchors and prepare to drill the Sole wells.

The delay to the beginning of Sole-3 due to the heavy weather at Casino does not impact the timeline for completion of the Sole gas project.

It is also noteworthy that the location of the Sole wells in the Gippsland Basin is significantly more sheltered from extreme weather conditions than the Casino field in the Otway Basin.