Apache announced the results of two development wells completed in June at the company's Forties field in the UK sector of the North Sea.
Apache acquired a new 4-D (time-lapse) seismic survey over Forties during 2010, which enhances the company's ability to identify accumulations of by-passed oil within the field area. Charlie 4-3 and Delta 3-5, the eighth and ninth development wells brought on production at Forties during 2011, successfully targeted two of these accumulations. Additional 4-D driven targets are being identified across the field. Apache expects to drill a total of 16 wells in the Forties field during 2011.
"The safe and very successful delivery of our 2011 drilling program reflects the experience, teamwork, technical skill and commitment of the Apache North Sea region," said James L. House, region vice president and managing director of Apache North Sea Ltd.
When Apache acquired Forties in 2003, the field was producing 40,000 b/d. With the onset of these new wells in mid-June, gross daily production rates have reached as high as 70,000 barrels of oil equivalent, even with output constraints due to construction projects and temporary pipeline closures. At the Charlie platform alone, Apache development drilling has increased production from a low of less than 5,000 b/d in 2006 to a present rate of approximately 30,000 b/d. Apache expects full transmission capacity to become available during the third quarter as planned repair and maintenance work is completed and the Bravo pipeline comes back online.
Apache owns a 97.14 percent interest in the Forties field. Forties is the largest single oil accumulation discovered in the United Kingdom sector of the North Sea and 40 years after its discovery is the second-highest producing oil field.
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