Ithaca Energy Makes Discovery at Athena Well

Ithaca Energy says that drilling on its Athena 14/18b-15 well in the outer Moray Firth area has reached total depth of 11,051 feet. Electric logs indicate that the well has intersected a total oil column of 632 feet in the Upper Leek formation.

The well was drilled on time and on budget at a high angle of 60 degrees from vertical through the Lower Cretaceous Upper Leek reservoir and encountered the reservoir 50 vertical feet higher than the nearby 14/18-7 well that tested 850 barrels of oil per day (bopd).

The 14/18b-15 well intersected 632 feet of gross oil-bearing sandstones at the 60 degree angle drilled, representing 329 feet vertical. Electric logs and other well data received to date indicate that this interval contains 253 feet of net porous oil bearing sands representing 127 feet vertical.

Porosities in the oil column range from 12 % to 20 % with an average of 16.5%. A 32 foot core was recovered and in correlation with the electric logs, the reservoir parameters as observed are of higher quality than the 14/18-7 well.

Currently, production casing is being run to the total depth drilled and will be perforated for testing purposes. It is anticipated that testing will require approximately 9 days and will commence while the rig is on location. Depending upon the successful results of the tests, the well will be suspended for future production.

Ithaca is the operator with the beneficial interest of the participating companies being 70% Ithaca, 20% EWE Akteingesellschaft (EWE) and 10% Zeus Petroleum (previously Wimbledon). Gemini Oil and Gas Fund II provided Ithaca with $6 million for the drilling of the well in return for a gross revenue interest ranging from 3.86% to 1.29% against Ithaca's interest.

Neill Carson, COO of Ithaca commented:
"We are delighted the drilling of Ithaca's first well in the North Sea has been achieved on schedule and on budget and that the initial results confirm the presence of oil in substantial quantities. Subject to successful testing, further drilling to develop the accumulation and the application for field development is planned."

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