Disappointing results for Aker BP in North Sea

Norwegian oil and gas company Aker BP has concluded the drilling of a wildcat well in the North Sea and encountered a minor oil discovery, which is not considered to be commercial.

Deepsea Stavanger - Aker BP
Deepsea Stavanger; Source: Aker BP

The wildcat well 24/12-7 is located in production licence 1041 where Aker BP is the operator. The well was drilled about 17 kilometres southwest of the Bøyla field in the North Sea and 230 kilometres west of Stavanger.

Aker BP was issued a drilling permit for the well from the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) in October 2021. The well was drilled from the Odfjell Drilling-owned Deepsea Stavanger semi-submersible drilling rig.

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The NPD informed on Tuesday that the primary exploration target for Aker BP in the well was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Palaeocene in the Hermod Formation. The secondary exploration target was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Palaeocene in the Heimdal Formation.

In the primary exploration target, the well encountered the Hermod Formation in a thickness of about 75 metres. A 38-metre oil column was proven in a total of 20 metres of sandstone, with very good to extremely good reservoir properties.

The oil/water contact at 2132 metres below sea level was confirmed with pressure points.

In the secondary exploration target, the well encountered a total of 34 metres of aquiferous sandstone with good reservoir properties in the Heimdal Formation.

Preliminary calculations of the size of the discovery show approx. 0.8 million standard cubic metres (Sm3) of recoverable oil equivalent. The licensees do not consider this discovery to be commercial, according to the NPD.

The well was not formation tested, but data acquisition was undertaken. This is the first exploration well in production licence 1041, which was awarded in APA 2019.

Aker BP drilled the 24/12-7 well to a measured vertical depth of 2275 metres below sea level and was terminated in the Heimdal Formation. The water depth is 118 metres. The well has now been permanently plugged and abandoned.

The Deepsea Stavanger has also recently been used by Lundin to drill a wildcat well southeast of the Johan Sverdrup field in the North Sea, but no hydrocarbons have been encountered.