Irish explorer Lansdowne Oil & Gas said that it was "very pleased" with the results of the 3D seismic surveys of its prospects in the North Celtic Sea as it announced an update to the interpretation of these results Thursday. Oil sector analysts who follow the company said the data suggests the structures contained within Lansdowne's Celtic Sea licenses are "significantly more prospective" than first thought.
The firm also announced Thursday that it has begun the farm-out process for its prospects by establishing a data room for industry review. The farm-out process is aimed at seeking partners to drill commitment wells on its three prospects in the North Celtic Sea.
Lansdowne said that interpretation has been completed for its Amergin Prospect and has confirmed the presence of a robust rotated tilted fault block. The primary targets are for oil in the Cretaceous Basal Wealden sands, which are currently being appraised at the Barryroe 48/24-10Z well some 25 miles (40 kilometers) to the east, and the Upper Jurassic sands that are oil bearing in the Helvick Field, 75 miles (120 kilometers) to the northeast.
Two additional targets have also identified oil in the shallower Cretaceous Wealden sand sequences that are present in nearby wells.
Prospective resource estimates for Amergin have increased from 62 million barrels of oil to 231 Mmbo, reflecting additional prospectivity within the Cretaceous Wealdean sands as well as an upgrade to the estimates for the Basal Wealden (an increase of 79 Mmbo to 104 Mmbo) and Upper Jurassic (up by 10 Mmbo to 47 Mmbo).
At the Midleton prospect the interpretation of the 3D seismic has "greatly clarified" the structure and extended the closure to the north, resulting in a significant increase in the structure size, said Lansdowne.
The Midleton prospect is a four-way dip closed faulted anticline at the primary Lower Cretacous "A" Greensand level. This sand is the main reservoir in the nearby Kinsale Head Gasfield and the sole producing reservoir in the nearby Ballycotton Gasfield.
Prospective resources estimates for Midleton have increased from 56 billion cubic feet of gas to 268 Bcf, with new potential seen in the Upper Wealden sands (94 Bcf). The primary Lower Cretaceous "A" sand has also been revised upwards from 56 Bcf to 174 Bcf.
Meanwhile, interpretation of the firm's Rosscarbery prospect is still ongoing, according to Lansdowne.
"We are very pleased with the results of the 3D seismic," said Lansdowne CEO Steve Boldly in a statement. "We believe we have obtained high quality data sets that have clarified the prospects and reduced the risk prior to drilling. We believe we have an attractive portfolio of opportunities for both oil and gas in the shallow water North Celtic Sea Basin and will now focus upon seeking industry partners to join us for the planned drilling campaign."
Analysts at FinnCap, a London-based investment bank, said that the interpretation of 3D acquired by Lansdowne during 2011 "suggests the Amergin and Midleton structures are significantly more prospective than initially thought".
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