Exploration/Development news briefs, Aug. 23

A unit of Chevron Corp. discovered an oil field in the Rio Negro Norte block in Rio Negro province, Western Argentina, said partner Repsol-YPF SA. La Yesera x-1 well, 20 km southwest of Loma Negra field was drilled to 4,846 m. It flowed on test more than 3,000 b/d of 53°-gravity oil. Chevron San Jorge operates the block with 18.75%; Repsol-YPF owns 35%; Corporaci�n Financiera Internacional, 15%; Metro Holding, 12.5%; and San Jorge Energy, 18.75%.

BHP Petroleum (Trinidad) Ltd. has extended hydrocarbon discoveries in the Block 2c production-sharing contract area off Trinidad with third well Kairi-1. The well, in 35 m of water, was drilled to more than 2,200 m and found an "encouraging" hydrocarbon column. The well was abandoned. Partners in the block are Elf Petroleum Trinidad BV and Talisman (Trinidad) Ltd.

Phillips Petroleum International Corp. Denmark said exploration well Hejre-1 -- on license 5/98 in the northern part of the Danish Central Graben -- found oil in sandstones of Late Jurassic period. Phillips said an "extensive evaluation program" rendered test production unnecessary. It is now evaluating the discovery size. The ENSCO 70 rig will be moved to a position in the eastern part of the Central Graben to drill exploration well Svane-1 in license 4/98.

Unocal Corp. said a well on the Ponza prospect on Keathley Canyon Block 774 in the Gulf of Mexico does not appear to hold commercial quantities of pay. Evaluation of data from the well is continuing. The well has been plugged and abandoned. Results of the March well were not disclosed earlier for competitive reasons related to Wednesday's lease sale, said Unocal.

Shell Brasil SA has found oil with well 1-SHEL-4-RJS in the Santos basin off Brazil, said partner Texaco Inc. The well, in 5,099 ft of water, was drilled to 13,485 ft TD and found 223 ft of net oil pay in Tertiary deepwater sands. Texaco said indications are the find contains heavy oil. The other partner in the block is Petroleo Brasileiro SA. Texaco said, "Considerable work remains before a heavy oil discovery in these water depths can be declared commercial."

ONGC Videsh Ltd., the overseas arm of the Indian government-owned Oil & Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC), plans to raise $200 million to invest in the Nam Con Son natural gas project off Viet Nam. The BP PLC-operated, $1.3 billion project received partner go ahead earlier this year (OGJ Online, Mar. 1, 2001). ONGC Ltd. will finalize the deal with its lending consortium by Aug. 24. Parent company ONGC will be the guarantor.

Occidental Oil & Gas Corp., Los Angeles, awarded Flowtronex International Inc., Tyler, Tex., a "multi-million dollar" project to assist in the development of Eden-Yuturi discovery in Ecuador. Flowtronex will be responsible for the detailed engineering, fabrication, and startup of eight modular pumping systems.

The oil exploration joint venture between Indian state-owned Oil & Natural Gas Corp. and Indian Oil Corp. will invest 3 billion rupees ($64 million) over 2 years in exploration of the Bengal offshore block. About a third will be spent on seismic surveys.

Santos (Sampang) Pty. Ltd., a unit of Australian company Santos Ltd., said the first of two drillstem tests on Oyong-1 well off East Java flowed 762 b/d of 41.9° gravity oil and 1.22 MMcfd of gas through a 24/64-in. surface choke. That test covered the 927-931 m interval. Oyong-1 is 80 km east of Surabaya in 44.5 m of water. Other partners are Coastal Indonesia Sampang Ltd. and Cue (Sampang) Pty. Ltd.

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