BHP Billiton Reaches 80,000 bbl/d with Stybarrow

BHP Billiton has reached sustained production levels of 80,000 barrels a day at the Stybarrow project offshore Western Australia. Brought on stream two months ahead of schedule, the project started production in November 2007.

In less than two months of production, Stybarrow has produced 2.5 million barrels of oil. One well alone is producing about 32,000 barrels of oil a day.

Stybarrow incorporates a nine-well subsea development and the FPSO Stybarrow Venture. The company touts the use of real-time management technology as one of the reasons for the project's success.

"BHP Billiton's Stybarrow development is exceeding expectations. The wells have ramped up to full capacity in record time and the processing capability on the vessel has been highly reliable," J. Michael Yeager, Chief Executive Petroleum of BHP Billiton, said.

Situated in production license WA-32-L in the Exmouth Sub-basin about 40 miles (65 kilometers) from Exmouth, Stybarrow is located at a water depth of about 2,706 feet (825 meters). Discovered in 2003, recoverable reserve estimates range from 60 to 90 million barrels of oil for the Stybarrow and Eskdale fields, and the estimated field life is 10 years. The cost for the project is about U.S. $760 million.

BHP Billiton serves as operator of the project with 50% interest. Woodside Energy Limited holds the remaining 50% interest.

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