Rodinia Abandons AU Mulyawara Well

Rodinia Oil announced that its 80% owned Mulyawara-1 exploration well reached a total measured depth ("TD") of 2691.3 meters and was officially plugged and abandoned on October 13, 2011. The TD was at the top of the interpreted Mesoproterozoic section. Mulyawara-1 was drilled as a wildcat exploration well far from geologic control. The nearest existing wells with the prospective deep Pindyin sands are approximately 500 km to the west and 300 km to the east.

After evaluating the log information and the drilling samples, the decision to plug and abandon the well was made. A definitive petrophysical interpretation of the deeper zones was not possible due to the extremely poor quality of the wireline logs caused by the severe degree of washout in the wellbore.

During drilling, gas shows with up to C5 (pentane) content were recorded over sands in the Mundallio and Emeroo sections and totaled approximately 150 gross meters. Log evaluation indicates that the developed sandstone reservoirs had porosity less than 10%. These results are to be added to those discussed in Rodinia's August 4, 2011 press release, which reported hydrocarbon shows in the uphole Murnaroo sandstone.

The sub-salt section had poorer than expected Pindyin sandstone development and contained no shows. The shows in the Neoproterozoic Murnaroo, Mundallio and Emeroo sandstones are encouraging as they demonstrate an active mature petroleum system capable of generating hydrocarbon.

Given the number of delays due to mechanical and operational issues at Mulyawara-1, the well has taken approximately three times longer than anticipated to drill resulting in approximately 75% cost overruns. Rodinia has undertaken a comprehensive review of its operations to determine how to achieve better performance for the remainder of its 2011 capital program. Much of this review incorporates the planning and design for future wells and working with suppliers to improve the equipment and services available to Rodinia in the Officer Basin.

2011 Capital Program Update

The primary objective of Rodinia's current capital program is to appraise the potential of the large structures currently identified on its lands in the Officer Basin, South Australia. The Mulyawara-1 well has substantially added to Rodinia's knowledge of the geologic and hydrocarbon potential of the Officer Basin. Rodinia will continue mapping the Murnaroo, Mundallio, Emeroo and Pindyin sandstones to better determine the extent and reservoir potential of these formations at its next well, "Kutjara-1", which will be drilled using modified drilling techniques in an effort to improve drilling efficiencies and lower costs.

The Kutjara-1 well location has a number of advantages, namely:

  • Recently acquired infill seismic has better defined the structure
  • It is accessible from existing infrastructure
  • The distance from Mulyawara-1 to Kutjara-1 reduces rig travel time
  • Fault patterns isolate the migration pathway and potential source of Kutjara-1 from Mulyawara-1
  • Recent hydrocarbon shows in the Mulyawara-1 well have demonstrated active petroleum systems in the Munaroo, Mundallio and Emeroo sections
  • Mulyawara-1 has demonstrated that most of the Kutjara-1 well can be drilled using PDC bits, which offer drilling efficiency and should substantially lower the overall evaluation costs

Ensign Rig #16 will shortly travel approximately 45 km south to this second location, Kutjara-1, to commence drilling.

Rodinia is in the early exploration stage and is operating in the remote and under-explored Officer Basin in Australia. Its ability to finance its future operations is dependent upon the existence of economically recoverable hydrocarbons and its ability to obtain new sources of financing. The second location, Kutjara-1, is a wildcat exploration well and is still a high-risk venture which is yet to be proven.