Providence, together with its partners, announced details of the upcoming 2008 drilling program offshore Ireland. Providence, as operator, has contracted the semi-submersible drilling rig GlobalSantaFe Arctic 2 for a two firm plus one option well program in the North Celtic Sea Basin, offshore southern Ireland. Drilling activities are expected to commence in August 2008.
The 2008 drilling program has been agreed following the evaluation of data collected during last year's successful 50/11-3 oil discovery on the Hook Head structure. Post drill analysis by Providence suggests resources of up to c. 60 MMBO recoverable based on a STOIIP of c. 390 MMBO. A number of further appraisal well locations have since been identified across the Hook Head structure with the north-west sector being the first to be evaluated as part of the 2008 program. This well location is interpreted to be structurally higher than the 50/11-1 well which encountered c. 100ft of net hydrocarbon bearing sands of Lower Cretaceous age and is therefore considered to be a relatively low risk location. The results from the initial well will be used in deciding the location of all subsequent wells in the 2008 program. This drilling program has been designed not only to further demonstrate the extent and magnitude of the Hook Head oil field but also to provide important information on deliverability, which is a key element in any future commercial development.
Furthermore, ongoing studies in the Celtic Sea have highlighted significant oil potential in an adjacent discovery known as Dunmore, which is located in blocks 50/6 & 7 and is some 20 kilometers from Hook Head. The 50/6-1 Dunmore discovery well flowed at c. 2,100 BOPD of 44o API oil from Jurassic sands and updated mapping has revealed an optimal appraisal well location on the structure some c. 500ft up-dip from the original well. A site survey has been acquired for this location and well planning is being finalized. Providence's re-analysis of existing seismic data, together with a re-evaluation of the drill stem test data from the discovery well, suggest that the main structure contains contingent resources of c. 18 MMBO.
Tony O'Reilly, Chief Executive said, "Following last year's successful oil discovery at Hook Head, we are delighted this year to be in a position to drill further appraisal wells in the Celtic Sea. The objective of this summer's drilling program is to demonstrate oil flow rates as well as establishing the fields' areal extent."
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