Photo: Transocean Norge rig; Source: Transocean

Minor gas find for ConocoPhillips off Norway

ConocoPhillips Skandinavia, a Norwegian subsidiary of the U.S. energy giant, ConocoPhillips, has made a minor gas discovery in a well located southwest of the Skarv field in the Norwegian Sea.

ConocoPhillips received a drilling permit for the well 6507/4-3 S from the Norwegian authorities in April 2022. This well was drilled about 30 kilometres southwest of the Skarv field in the Norwegian Sea and about 240 kilometres west of Brønnøysund.

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In an update on Thursday, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) informed that ConocoPhillips as the operator of production licence 1064, valid until 14 February 2026, has concluded the drilling of the wildcat well 6507/4-3 S. This is the first exploration well in this production licence, which was awarded in APA 2019.

ConocoPhillips Skandinavia has an ownership interest of 40 per cent interest in this licence while other licensees are PGNiG Upstream Norway with 30 per cent, Aker BP with 20 per cent, and the Norwegian state-owned giant Equinor, which holds the remaining 10 per cent interest.

The NPD explained that the objective of the well 6507/4-3 S was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Late Cretaceous in the Lange Formation. During the drilling of the well, sandstone layers were encountered in the Lange Formation totalling about 55 metres with poor reservoir quality.

According to the NPD, the well encountered an approximately 1-metre gas column in the shallowest part of the sandstone layers, but no contacts could be proven.

The NPD pointed out that the preliminary estimates indicate the size of the discovery is less than 0.1 million Sm3 of recoverable oil equivalent. In light of this, the result from this well will be considered by the licensees for further prospectivity in the licence.

While the well was not formation-tested, extensive data acquisition and sampling were carried out, based on the NPD’s statement. In addition, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate confirmed that the well was drilled to a vertical depth of 3914 metres below sea level, and was terminated in the Lange Formation from the Late Cretaceous.

Furthermore, the water depth at the site is 436 metres and the well will now be permanently plugged and abandoned. This well was drilled by Transocean’s Transocean Norge semi-submersible rig, which was originally contracted in June 2021 for four wells with five one-well options.

As disclosed by the NPD, the Transocean Norge rig will now drill wildcat well 6306/3-2 S in production licence 935 in the Norwegian Sea, where ConocoPhillips Skandinavia is also the operator.