Nothing But Dry Deepwater Wells for ONGC

Still no good news to report from three deepwater drilling rigs working for ONGC: Sagar Vijay, Belford Dolphin or Discoverer Seven Seas.

The Sagar Vijay has drilled a dry hole at its third location offshore KG-DS-OS/3 defying hopes of a strike during testing after drilling stopped late July. "Two objects were identified for conventional testing," a source told PETROWATCH. "The first was water bearing and the second is also likely to be water bearing." Sagar Vijay now moves to her fourth location, "most likely on the same block".

On August 28th, the Belford Dolphin abandoned her fifth dry well offshore Gujarat and moved to location GS-DW-1-3 further west. On August 30th, the rig began drilling her sixth well on this block in water depths of 2500 meters to a target depth of 3800 meters. "At the previous location there was porous limestone but it was not charged," we are told. After this, the rig will sail offshore Mumbai to drill one or two wells in a 'channel levee complex'. "So far we have explored carbonates. We now want to explore other plays."

ONGC will then move the Belford Dolphin south to offshore Kerala Konkan to drill at a location in water depths of 1400 meters. After this the Belford Dolphin will move to the eastern offshore in December.

"The west coast will then be on the back burner." ONGC has, "identified one or two locations in the Krishna deepwater, one or two in the Godavari deepwater and two in the Mahanadi deepwater basins" for the Belford Dolphin. All these locations are on ONGC's NELP-II blocks and sit in water depths of more than 1800 meters.

In late August meanwhile, Discoverer 534 abandoned her second dry hole. "The MDT at the second well did not yield any promising results." On August 24th, Discoverer 534 began drilling at her third location: GD-3-1 in water depth of 1036 meters to TD of 2800 meters. Last week the 20-inch casing was lowered but mud loss problems are delaying the lowering of a 13 3/8-inch casing.

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