Australia's Pilot Energy Ltd., formerly Rampart Energy Ltd., disclosed Tuesday that an independent audit of prospective oil resources for its WA-507-P exploration permit in the Carnarvon Basin offshore Western Australia is complete, and confirms the potential for multi-million barrel oil discoveries. This is further to the Company’s announcement Feb. 25, which confirmed the potential for multi-Tcf (trillion cubic feet) gas discoveries within the permit.
Gaffney, Cline & Associates (GCA) has estimated prospective oil resources cases for the three exploration leads identified by Pilot Energy (and previously assessed for the gas case). GCA determine that the leads are more likely to be gas bearing, with a 30 percent probability of oil versus a 70 percent probability of gas (subject to the quoted Geological Chance of Success, or GCoS), consistent with the established nature of the gas play versus the emerging oil play.
GCA estimate the gross prospective oil resources (100 percent) to be as follows, of which Pilot Energy’s interest is 80 percent.
Regional well data and various studies support the case for an oil play within Exmouth Plateau, with the Triassic Mungaroo source/reservoir interval having been deposited in an outboard, marine depositional environment over WA-507-P. This marine environment has positive implications for extensive deposition of oil-prone source rocks and good quality sandstone reservoirs.
Historically the primary target of outer Northwest Shelf exploration has been gas, with a high success rate largely based on drilling prospects that exhibit Direct Hydrocarbon Indicators (DHIs) on seismic data. DHIs tend not to be so readily apparent in the case of oil, resulting in a large number of structures that remain undrilled but which may be oil bearing. This has not gone unnoticed by the likes of Shell, Statoil and Eni/Octanex, who are keenly pursuing the oil play in their own permits surrounding WA-507-P.
Pilot Energy Managing Director, Iain Smith, commented:
"GCA's findings clearly confirm the potential for the very large and previously quantified exploration leads within WA-507-P to be oil-bearing. We look forward to progressing our geological understanding of the permit in order to further de-risk the exploration leads, as we work towards attracting a suitable industry partner to fund the future exploration program."
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