Silverstone Fires Up Production at Victoria Field in UK North Sea

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The Aberdeen based exploration and production company, Silverstone Energy Limited, has announced that the Victoria Field is now in production.

The Victoria Field is located in Southern North Sea Block 49/17 and is the first phase of development of the Victoria and Viking B Extension accumulation.

Silverstone SNS Limited, a subsidiary of Silverstone Energy Limited, holds 50% equity interest in the field and is the operator, with the remaining equity held by ConocoPhillips and BP who elected not to participate in the development at this stage.

Silverstone currently has a 100% participating interest in the development, which will revert to its 50% field equity interest on recovery of investment costs and election by ConocoPhillips and BP. Silverstone's 50% field equity interest was earned through the successful 49/17-14 discovery well drilled by the company in January 2007.

The Phase 1 Victoria Field recoverable reserves are estimated to be 36 billion cubic feet of gas. The field was developed through the re-entry and fraccing of the discovery well and is tied back to the Viking BD facility via the Vixen infrastructure operated by ConocoPhillips.

The fraccing of the well -- the use of hydraulic pressure to fracture reservoir formations -- was carried out by Halliburton on the Ensco 100 jackup oil rig and is the largest rig-based frac ever performed in the North Sea.

First production is currently a conservative 15 MMCFD to manage the risk of sand production in the early stages following the frac. The gas is exported 80 miles through the Viking Transportation System subsea pipeline to the Theddlethorpe Gas Terminal on the Lincolnshire coast.

The Victoria facilities have been set up to enable rapid development of the additional fault blocks which make up the Victoria and Viking B Extension, subject to the performance of Phase 1.

Silverstone Chief Executive Officer, Matt Brister, said that the company's first development was a significant milestone in the evolution of Silverstone, which was founded just four years ago. Chief Operating Officer, Steve Horton, thanked the Silverstone staff and the stakeholders in the project for their good work and co-venturers ConocoPhillips and BP for their assistance and support.

The team is now working on the potential development of Victoria Phase 2 and the Vulcan East discovery and expects to drill at least three more exploration wells in the next 12 months.


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