ExxonMobil makes 20th discovery on Stabroek as new Liza FPSO heads to Guyana

U.S. oil major ExxonMobil has revealed a new discovery has been made at the Pinktail well in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana. Furthermore, an FPSO for the second phase of Exxon’s Liza development has started its journey from Singapore to Guyana.

Noble Sam Croft drillship drilled the Pinktail well for ExxonMobil
Noble Sam Croft drillship; Source: Noble Corp.

The Pinktail well encountered 220 feet (67 meters) of net pay in high-quality hydrocarbon-bearing sandstone reservoirs, ExxonMobil said on Thursday.

In addition to the successful appraisal of the Turbot discovery, the Turbot-2 well encountered 43 feet (13 meters) of net pay in a newly identified, high-quality hydrocarbon-bearing sandstone reservoir separate from the 75 feet (23 meters) of high quality, oil-bearing sandstone reservoir pay encountered in the original Turbot-1 discovery well.

This follows the additional pay in deeper reservoirs encountered at the previously announced Whiptail discovery and these results will be incorporated into future developments.

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“These discoveries are part of an extensive well program in the Stabroek Block utilizing six drillships to test play extensions and new concepts, evaluate existing discoveries and complete development wells for the Liza Phase 2 and Payara projects”, said Mike Cousins, senior vice president of exploration and new ventures at ExxonMobil.

Separately, the Liza Unity floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel set sail from Singapore to Guyana in early September. The vessel was in Singapore for the topside integration phase, which was done by Keppel. Keppel’s scope of work included the fabrication of several topside modules, the riser balcony, the spread-mooring and the umbilical support structures, as well as the installation and integration of associated equipment and all topside modules onto the FPSO.

The FPSO will be utilized for the Liza Phase 2 development and is expected to begin production in early 2022, with a capacity to produce approximately 220,000 barrels of oil per day.

Keppel O&M has also started work on the third FPSO unit earmarked for Guyana, the Prosperity FPSO. The vessel hull recently arrived at Keppel O&M’s yard in Singapore and work onboard has started.

ExxonMobil anticipates at least six projects online by 2027 and sees potential for up to 10 projects to develop its current discovered recoverable resource base. The Liza Destiny FPSO vessel is currently producing approximately 120,000 barrels of oil per day.

The Pinktail discovery is located approximately 21.7 miles (35 kilometres) southeast of the Liza Phase 1 project, which began production in December 2019, and 3.7 miles (6 kilometres) southeast of Yellowtail-1.

The Pinktail well was drilled in 5,938 feet (1,810 meters) of water by the Noble Sam Croft. The Turbot-2 discovery is located approximately 37 miles (60 kilometres) to the southeast of the Liza phase one project, and 2.5 miles (4 kilometres) from the Turbot-1 discovery announced in October 2017. Turbot-2 was drilled in 5,790 feet (1,765 meters) of water by the Noble Sam Croft.

The Stabroek Block is 6.6 million acres (26,800 square kilometres). ExxonMobil affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is the operator and holds 45 per cent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess holds 30 per cent interest and CNOOC Petroleum holds 25 per cent interest.

Hess CEO, John Hess, said: “We are happy to announce our 20th significant discovery on the Stabroek Block, which will add to the discovered recoverable resource estimate of more than 9 billion barrels of oil equivalent”.