Unocal says Trident find in deepwater Gulf of Mexico taps 300 ft of pay

By the OGJ Online Staff

HOUSTON, July 24 -- Unocal Corp. said Tuesday its deepwater Trident prospect in Alaminos Canyon Block 903 in the US Gulf of Mexico found more than 300 ft of hydrocarbon-bearing pay and other zones of interest.

Unocal said preliminary evaluation indicates reservoir fluid of 40°-gravity or higher.

Trident is 185 miles southeast of Corpus Christi, Tex, in 9,687 ft of water. The well was drilled to 20,500 ft TD in 66 days at an estimated cost of $34 million.

Mike Bell, vice-president of Unocal's Deepwater USA business unit, said, "We will need to perform additional appraisal and evaluation work in order to determine ultimate commerciality. We are especially encouraged by the thickness of the hydrocarbon columns we penetrated, the apparent quality of the oil, and the size of the structure we are testing -- up to 10,000 acres in structural closure."

The Trident prospect covers seven blocks in Alaminos Canyon. Unocal is operator and holds a 59.5% working interest. Partners include Chevron USA Production Co. 15%, Ocean Energy Inc. 12.75%, Agip Petroleum Co. 8.55%, and Phillips Petroleum Co. 4.2%.

Unocal will conduct further evaluation of the data from the Trident well and expects to begin an appraisal drilling program in 2002.

The Discoverer Spirit drillship is expected to move to Green Canyon Block 782 to drill an appraisal well on the Mad Dog discovery, which is operated by BP. The discovery was announced in April 1999, and development sanction is expected later this year.

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