3D Survey Spotlights Resource Potential of Spanish Point Area

Providence provided a new technical update on Frontier Exploration License (FEL) 2/04, which contains the Spanish Point gas condensate and Burren oil discoveries. This license is situated in the Main Porcupine Basin, c. 200 km southwest of Shell's Corrib gas field on the Irish Atlantic Margin, being operated by Providence (56%) on behalf of its partners, Chrysaor E&P Ireland Limited (30%) and Sosina Exploration Limited (14%). During the summer of 2009, Providence and its partners acquired a c. 300 sq km 3D seismic survey over the area, the interpretation and processing of which is currently ongoing. 


The final processed 3D seismic data provide excellent resolution of the Upper Jurassic hydrocarbon bearing reservoir intervals and allow for the direct mapping of some of these zones across the Spanish Point structure. The data confirm the earlier seismic interpretation based on previous 2D surveys that Spanish Point comprises a large structural closure and suggest that further hydrocarbon bearing reservoir zones may be present above those tested by the 35/8-2 discovery well (flowed c. 1,800 BOEPD from one of four logged hydrocarbon bearing intervals). Seismic interpretation and mapping indicates an undrilled section of up to c. 750 ft thick above the existing c. 1,400 ft. hydrocarbon bearing section which may host additional hydrocarbon bearing zones. 


The 3D seismic survey also covered the adjacent 35/8-1 Burren oil discovery which flowed c. 730 BOPD of high quality 34o API oil from one of two logged hydrocarbon bearing Lower Cretaceous sandstone intervals. A number of laterally extensive seismic anomalies of similar age to the Burren discovery have been identified within the 3D survey area. These anomalies suggest that the Burren discovery could from part of a much larger stacked Lower Cretaceous oil bearing reservoir system providing significant future appraisal and exploration potential. 


Previous 2D seismic interpretation indicated the presence of a potentially large structural closure known as the Wilde exploration prospect underlying the Spanish Point discovery. Interpretation and mapping of the new 3D data has confirmed the presence of the Wilde prospect with an associated c. 45 sq km of areal closure. The Upper Jurassic interval of the Wilde exploration target is of significant interest as it is considered to be of equivalent age to Callovian-Oxfordian zones which flowed at a cumulative rate of c. 5,000 BOPD in the nearby 26/28-1 well (situated c. 30 km to the north). This well also encountered good reservoir development within the Bajocian-Bathonian section suggesting further hydrocarbon potential within the underlying Middle Jurassic section. 


Over the next two months, the results of the 3D seismic interpretation will be used to determine the final resource estimates for the Spanish Point discovery. This in turn will allow the partners to optimally plan for any future appraisal well program. Resource estimates will also be generated for the Burren oil discovery and underlying Wilde exploration prospect. This information is expected to be made available in Q4 2010. 

Speaking today, Tony O'Reilly, Chief Executive of Providence, said, "It is extremely encouraging that our modern 'state of the art' 3D seismic data have confirmed significant structural closure at Spanish Point. In addition, the Burren discovery is now emerging as an exciting new oil play which may provide either an incremental or potential standalone future development project in the Spanish Point area. While not a primary objective of the survey, the data have also verified the presence of the large underlying Wilde exploration prospect, which could form a dual objective for any future Spanish Point appraisal well. We look forward to providing shareholders with a further update on the resource estimates in relation to Spanish Point, Burren and Wilde later in the year as well as our plans to progress them to drilling."