Total's Pazflor Development Offers Firsts for Deep-Sea Recovery

Total, as operator of the Block 17, announces the award of the principal contracts for the giant Pazflor oil development, the third development centre on Block 17, deep offshore Angola, following Girassol and Dalia.

Drilling operations are planned to commence in 2009 and oil production is scheduled to start in 2011.

Located about 150 kilometers off the coast of Angola and 40 kilometers northeast of Dalia, in depths of 600 to 1200 meters, the Pazflor development involves bringing four fields into production, Perpetua, Hortensia and Zinia (Upper Miocene), and Acacia (Oligocene), which were discovered between mid 2000 and early 2003.

The Pazflor development covers 600 square kilometers with a north-south axis of over 30 kilometers.

After Girassol and Dalia, the launch of Pazflor represents a major new stage in the development of Block 17.

The overall development program uses well-tried techniques on Girassol and Dalia. A FPSO for Pazflor production will process the oil via 49 subsea wells (25 producers, 22 water injectors and 2 natural gas injectors). The FPSO will have a processing capacity of 200,000 barrels of oil per day and can store 1.9 million barrels, bringing the installed production capacity on Block 17 to over 700,000 barrels per day. The Pazflor FPSO will handle two oils of very different characteristics, which constitutes a technical challenge for the project: heavy oil (17 degrees-22 degrees API) from Miocene reservoirs, and lighter oil (35-38 degrees API) from the Acacia Oligocene reservoir.

In addition, Pazflor will incorporate a number of major technological advances in bringing difficult deep offshore fields into production, in particular seabed gas/liquid separation, right next to the production wells. This technology is a world first.

As part of the development process, the installations have been designed to limit the environmental impact of the FPSO and the associated industrial activities. Measures include eliminating flaring under normal operating conditions, recovering heat from turbine exhaust gases and recovering vent gases using a compressor.

An important part of the Pazflor development will be carried out in Angola, as part of Total's determination to continue increasing local involvement in its projects.