Total Makes Major Gas Find in Barents Sea

Total EP Norge AS, operator of production license 535, has completed the drilling of wildcat well 7225/3-1. The well, which proved gas, was drilled in the Barents Sea, about 250 kilometers north of Melkoya.

The primary exploration target for the well was to prove petroleum in Triassic reservoir rocks (Snadd and Kobbe formations). The secondary exploration target was to prove petroleum in the Middle Jurassic (Sto formation), Triassic (Havert formation) and Permian (Bjarmeland formation).

Gas was proven both in intervals from the Jurassic and the Triassic: in the Kobbe formation with a 400-meter interval in rocks of varying reservoir quality, and in the Havert formation in two intervals of 80 and 90 meters, respectively, in poorly developed reservoir rocks. Gas was also encountered in the Sto and Snadd formations.

Preliminary estimates place the size of the discovery between 10 and 50 billion standard cubic meters (Sm3) of recoverable gas.

A successful formation test has been carried out in the upper part of the Kobbe formation. The maximum production rate was 180 000 Sm3 gas per flow day through a 44/64-inch nozzle. The gas contains only small amounts of CO2, H2S and N2. The results from the well will be included in the ongoing evaluation of "Norvarg" to establish the size and extent of the gas discoveries.

The well was drilled in 376 meters of water and is the first exploration well in production license 535. The license was awarded in the 20th licensing round in 2009.

The well was drilled to a vertical depth of 4150 meters below the sea surface, and was terminated in the Orn formation in Permian rocks. The well will now be permanently plugged and abandoned.

Well 7225/3-1 was drilled by West Phoenix, which will now go on to drill for Statoil Petroleum AS on the Troll field in the North Sea.

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