Equinor strikes oil and gas in Norwegian Sea. Eyeing Norne tie-in for development

Equinor has made an oil and gas discovery in 6507/3-13. exploration well in the production license 159B the Norwegian Sea, and is thinking of a potential tie-up with the nearby Norne FPSO.

Transocean Spitsbergen; Photo by Kenneth Engelsvold; Source Equinor
Transocean Spitsbergen; Photo by Kenneth Engelsvold; Source Equinor

The well, Equnor said Monday, had two different reservoir targets; an upper drilling target containing 2-12 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe) of gas and a lower target with an estimated volume of 1-48 million barrels of recoverable oil equivalent.

Nick Ashton, Equinor’s senior vice president for exploration in Norway and the UK, said: “We are very pleased with the results of both targets. This was of course what we hoped for, and it isn’t given that we find both oil and gas in the same well. The volumes are broadly estimated, and operational challenges prevented side-tracking. We are evaluating both the time and place for further delineation to give us more accurate volume estimates.

Drilling of the well 6507/3-13 Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture started on April 27 around 14 kilometers south-west of the Norne field in the northern part of the Norwegian Sea.

The operation started by drilling to 2800 meters to the first target Snadd Outer Outer, where gas was proven. Further drilling down to 3200 meters to the second target, Black Vulture, hit oil. The well volume totals 3-60 million boe before further delineation is made.

“The deepest target is following up the Cape Vulture discovery of 2017, offering further opportunities on the Nordland Ridge, and we are very happy about today’s discovery. Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture and Cape Vulture combined have in fact proven to be a success story for Cretaceous reservoirs off the coast of Nordland, encouraging us to pursue further opportunities in the area going forward,” says Ashton.

The Transocean Spitsbergen semi-submersible drilling rig drilled the Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture well. The well has now been plugged and abandoned, while the license partners will evaluate how to further develop the discovery.

“Tying the discovery to the Norne ship is one of the options we will study. Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture is located close to the Norne field with all its infrastructure, and this option is in line with Equinor’s strategy of using existing solutions. The Cape Vulture discovery has already more than doubled remaining oil resources that can be produced through the Norne field, and we have a specific goal of further increasing the reserves around the Norne field,” says Ashton.

Transocean Spitsbergen is currently moving to production license 502 to drill the Equinor-operated exploration well Klaff in the North Sea.

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