Production of crude oil from the offshore Maari oil field has reached close to 40,000 barrels a day, substantially above the expected production capacity.
The long reach appraisal well Manaia-1 has also touched hydrocarbons 6.4 km away from the Maari platform at the target Mangahewa sandstone in the Manaia prospect.
The Maari and associated Manaia fields are both operated by Austrian owned OMV New Zealand.
One of the Maari field partners Horizon Oil said that since all five production wells in the main Moki sands at Maari came onstream in mid-August, the average combined rate has been 39,543 barrels of oil per day (bopd). This is above the previously stated throughput capacity at the moored field processing vessel the Raroa of 35,000 bopd.
Horizon said the additional capacity was afforded by a lower volume of gas flowing through the facilities allowing a higher oil production rate.
Horizon said that up to August 28th over 2.9 million barrels of oil have been produced with over 2.7 million barrels lifted and sold.
A recent investor presentation by Horizon says that Maari is a 60 million barrel oil field has an upside potential of 40 million barrels.
Meanwhile one of the other Maari partners Cue Energy Resources reported that the Manaia appraisal well has been drilled by the Ensco 107 the jackup drilling rig to a depth of 6,394 m in a 12-1/4" hole.
The target Mangahewa sandstone in the separate Manaia formation was intersected on prognosis at 6,324 m. Cue Energy said that based on mud logging and logging-while-drilling data it is interpreted to contain hydrocarbons.
On September 4th, Cue Energy said the drill pipe was being back reamed out of the hole in preparation for setting 9 5/8" casing. After that a 1,000 m horizontal section will be drilled through the Mangahewa reservoir.
This will take the Manaia well to an expected record length for a New Zealand well of about 7.5 km and will connect directly with the Maari platform.
The Manaia field is located south west of the Maari field in a separate exploration permit PEP 38413. The field was discovered in 1970 by the Maui-4 well by BP Shell Todd a year after the partners had found the Maui gas field.
Maui-4 intersected oil in the Mangahewa Formation reservoir, which tested at 575 bopd.
If hydrocarbons are established by the Manaia-1 well, it will be completed and tied into the Maari facilities for subsequent testing and production.
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