Nautical says that drilling activity will shortly commence on the Company's 9/2b license with an appraisal well to test the Kraken prospect. Kraken was discovered in 1985 and tested oil in the Heimdal sandstone, with best estimate contingent resources totaling 53 mmbo (23.9 mmbo net to Nautical). The Byford Dolphin is due on location in late September 2007 and is scheduled to spud the well in Mid October.
Following the drilling on Kraken, the rig will then move to block 9/11c to appraise the Mermaid prospect. Nautical has completed extensive seismic work over this prospect, which has confirmed a robust sand pinch out in the Maureen horizon. Best estimate prospective resources total 129 mmbo (77.4 mmbo net Nautical).
Nautical will also commence a site survey over the Selkie prospect, which contains net best estimated prospective resources of 13.2 mmbo, ahead of a planned well in early 2008.
In parallel with this drilling activity, Nautical is to commence seismic acquisition over block 3/27a and 9/2b to firm up the drilling locations over the Hydra prospects. The Company will shoot close spaced 2D seismic, which will be reinterpreted into a 3D model of these leads. Although resources estimates are too immature to establish, the Directors of Nautical are confident that additional prospective resources can be added to the Company's portfolio in the short to medium term.
Other Portfolio Activity
Outside of the UKCS, Nautical has developed a significant position in the East Irish Sea, following the 24th Licensing Round, the results of which were announced in February 2007. The Company has secured Blocks 113/29c and 113/30, which Nautical will operate as a traditional license.
Block 113/29c contains the Merrow Prospect, which contains proven oil and gas migration in the Ormskirk, Triassic and Collyhurst sandstones. Merrow is a large prospect with best estimate prospective resources of 123 mmbo or 393 Bcf of gas, located at 2 levels. Seismic data is currently being reprocessed, following which Nautical will decide on its drilling activity.
In France, Nautical is now preparing for an appraisal well on the Grenade prospect during Q4 2007. This well will then lead to testing in the spring of 2008, to confirm production. Nautical has a net interest in 2.8 mmbo of best estimate contingent resources on the Grenade prospect.
Commenting on this activity, Steve Jenkins, Chief Executive of Nautical said:
"Nautical has spent the last 24 months assembling a world class portfolio of prospects and reserves in its core regions of the UK and mainland Europe. The commencement of drilling marks a step change in activity for the Company, and we are now in an excellent position to confirm potential oil reserves of over 100 mmbo, in addition to confirming prospectivity of a further 100 mmbo."
"Our presence in the North Sea, Irish Sea and Europe confirms our leadership in heavy oil, which following the offer by Norsk-Hydro for Chevron's interest in the Mariner field, underlines the increased interest by major companies in these undeveloped resources.
"We look forward to the next few months of activity where we are confident of adding significant value to our portfolio for our shareholders."
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