Stena Spey rig; Source: Stena Drilling

With hydrocarbons present, results of North Sea well found to be ‘encouraging’

North Sea oil and gas operator and producer Ithaca Energy has revealed preliminary details about the results of its exploration drilling at the K2 prospect, located in Block 22/14c of the Central North Sea on the UK Continental Shelf.

Stena Spey rig; Source: Stena Drilling

Back in January 2023, Ithaca confirmed that its exploration drilling at the K2 prospect was slated to begin between June and July 2023 and take approximately 41 days to determine the presence of hydrocarbons.

The water depth at the drilling site is 294 feet (approximately 90 meters) while the final planned depth of drilling activities, targeting the Forties Member sandstones, is 9,000 feet (approximately 2,743 meters).

The total gross cost of drilling was estimated at £17 million in a dry hole case while further gross costs estimated to be in the region of £17 million will be incurred, in the success case, providing a total cost of £34 million (net to Ithaca Energy: £17 million).

While drilling the K2 prospect, Ithaca found that hydrocarbons were present in the reservoir in the Forties member sandstones, with 45 feet of net thickness. Therefore, logs were acquired to establish reservoir quality and further analysis of the well results will be performed to determine future activity and the recoverable resources estimate.

Furthermore, the company, together with its joint venture partner, has decided to perform an appraisal sidetrack following – what it deems as – encouraging results in the main bore. Ithaca Energy acts as the operator with a 50 per cent working interest in the licence while the remaining 50 per cent working interest is held by Dana Petroleum.

Alan Bruce, Ithaca’s Chief Executive Officer, commented: “I am delighted to report encouraging well results at K2, located in close proximity to existing infrastructure, further enhancing our portfolio.”

In February 2023, Ithaca Energy booked Stena Drilling’s Stena Spey semi-submersible rig on a one-well assignment for operations on the UKCS, which were due to start between 1 June 2023 and 1 September 2023.

Even though the name of the well, which the rig was hired to drill was not disclosed, the timing coincides with Ithaca’s timeline for the K2 exploration prospect.