Tap Oil Begins Carnarvon Basin Drilling Program

Tap Oil is gearing up to commence its drilling exploration program in the Carnarvon Basin offshore Western Australia with the ENSCO?53 jackup.

Tap will be the operator of three exploration wells in the Carnarvon Basin commencing this week. Specifically, the three wells that will be drilled are: Cyran-1 in EP 364 (Tap 100%); Crackling South-1 in EP 341 (Tap 50%); and Banjo-1 in EP 397 (Tap 33.33%).

The ENSCO-53 is expected to arrive at the location of the first well, Cyrano-1 in EP 364 and will commence drilling operations later this week.

Details of the exploration prospects to be drilled are as follows:

Cyrano-1 (Tap 100%)
The Cyrano prospect is located 4 km to the southwest of the Nasutus Oil Field. The structure, which is similar to that at Nasutus, is adjacent to the Flinders Fault on the eastern edge of the Barrow Sub-Basin, and comprises a significant seismic amplitude anomaly which has been interpreted to be indicative of hydrocarbons. The target level comprises lower Cretaceous sandstones at a depth of approximately 600 metres. The structure has the potential to contain a mean volume of approximately 6 mmbbls of recoverable oil.

Tap's only partner in this permit, Westranch Holdings Pty Ltd (a subsidiary of Norwest Energy NL - 10% interest), has elected not to participate and hence Tap will sole risk the drilling of this well.

Crackling South-1 (Tap 50%)
The Crackling South prospect lies on the eastern shelfal margin of the Barrow Sub-Basin. The well is a follow up to oil shows intersected in an adjacent well, Crackling-1, over a 22 meter interval within lower Cretaceous glauconitic sandstones, situated 1 km to the northeast. This well which was drilled in 1993, was not tested at that time to determine if moveable hydrocarbons were present. However, advances in production technology since then, in particularly horizontal drilling, have enabled apparently similar reservoirs to be successfully developed elsewhere within the Carnarvon Basin. The target horizon in Crackling South-1 comprises lower Cretaceous Mardie Greensand at a depth of approximately 350 meters. Although the Mardie Greensand generally has good porosity, it has low permeability due to the presence of glauconite clay. The prospect has the potential to contain a mean volume of 30 million barrels of recoverable oil. Other participants in the Crackling South-1 well are Apache with 22.5%; Strike Oil with 5% and West Oil with 22.5%

Banjo-1 (Tap 33.33%)
The Banjo prospect is located 30 kms to the east of Barrow Island. The target horizon for the well comprises lower Jurassic and Triassic sandstones which dip northwards and which are interpreted as being stratigraphically trapped to the south by a large Jurassic canyon considered to be shale filled. The top of the uppermost target sandstone is anticipated to be at a depth of approximately 900 meters. The prospect has the potential to contain up to 50 mmbbls of recoverable oil. Other participants in the Banjo-1 well are First Australian Resources with 33.33% and Goodrich Petroleum with 33.33%.