Photo: Illustration; Source: NPD

Equinor gets go-ahead to drill North Sea well

Norwegian oil major Equinor has been given a drilling permit to drill a new wildcat well in the North Sea, offshore Norway.

Under the permit, given to Equinor by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD), the well will be drilled in production license 554 using Seadrill’s West Hercules drilling rig after concluding the drilling of wildcat well 31/2-22 S with optional sidetrack-appraisal in production licence 090.

Equinor is the operator with an ownership interest of 40 per cent and other licensees are Vår Energi and Aker BP with a 30 per cent stake each. The drilling programme for the well designated 34/6-5 S relates to the drilling of a wildcat well.

West Hercules; Source: Equinor
West Hercules; Source: Equinor

The area in this licence consists of part of block 34/6. The well will be drilled about 25 kilometres east of the Snorre field and 1.5 kilometres northwest of the 34/6-2 S Garantiana discovery well.

Production licence 554 was awarded on 19 February 2010 (APA 2009). This is the sixth exploration well to be drilled in the licence.

As for the rig, West Hercules is a 6th-generation semi-submersible drilling rig built in 2008 at Daewoo Shipyard, South Korea. The facility received an Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC) from the PSA in 2012.

To remind, Equinor received consent from the Petroleum Safety Authority for the use of the West Hercules on the 31/2-22 S well – on the prospect named Blasto.

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Before the Blasto well drilling, Equinor struck gas and oil in production licence 923, the first discovery this year made near the Troll field in the North Sea.

Recoverable resources were estimated at between 7 and 11 million standard cubic metres of oil equivalent, corresponding to 44 – 69 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Exploration well 31/1-2 S and appraisal well 31/1-2 A in production licence 923 were drilled some 10 kilometres northwest of the Troll field, 18 kilometres southwest of the Fram field and 130 kilometres northwest of Bergen.