ExxonMobil starts up Sakhalin-1 Odoptu field

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Sept. 29
-- ExxonMobil Corp. started production from Odoptu field, the second offshore field developed in the Sakhalin-1 project off northeastern Russia.

The company expects Odoptu to produce up to 11 million bbl of oil in 2011 and said the startup was on schedule and within development cost expectations.

Field development included the drilling and completing of seven extended-reach wells from shore with the Yastreb drilling rig, one of the world's most powerful land-based rigs. The wells extend more than 5 miles under the Sea of Okhotsk to the Odoptu oil reservoir.

Development of Odoptu also included the construction of a new onshore oil and gas treatment facility and a flowline to the existing Chayvo onshore processing facility, 75 km from Odoptu.

The Sakhalin-1 project consists of the phased development of the Chayvo, Odoptu, and Arkutun-Dagi fields. ExxonMobil estimates that the fields contain a total resource of 2.3 billion bbl of oil and 17 tcf of gas.

Chayvo, the initial phase of the Sakhalin-1 project, began production in 2005. The field produces from extended-reach wells from shore and wells completed from the offshore Orlan platform.

Future phases call for the development of Arkutun-Dagi field as well as expanded gas production and sales from Chayvo field.

Arkutun-Dagi is about 25 km off the northeast coast of Sakhalin Island in 35 m of water, just east of Chayvo field.

ExxonMobil plans to develop Arkutun-Dagi in phases, starting with the northernmost part. It will send the crude oil to the Chayvo onshore processing facility for treatment and then by pipeline to the De-Kastri oil export terminal for export.

Development of Arkutun-Dagi includes the installation of a gravity-base platform from which wells will be drilled and serviced. The platform will differ from Chayvo's Orlan gravity-base platform in that it will have four concrete columns extending above the waterline. A 28,000-ton topsides will sit on the columns and accommodate the drilling and production equipment, as well as the living quarters.

The Orlan platform, which has a similar topsides, lies in more-shallow water, allowing its topsides to sit directly on the base without the need of columns.

The Arkutun-Dagi platform will become the first ExxonMobil-operated platform with friction pendulum bearing isolators to make it more seismically stable, the company said.

The Arkutun-Dagi field development along with Odoptu will help maintain Sakhalin-1 production as the Chayvo field production declines. ExxonMobil expects first oil from Arkuntun-Dagi in 2014.

The Chayvo future phase calls for the expanded development of gas resources that are not associated with current Chayvo oil production. This phase will involve the drilling of additional gas wells and the expansion of existing onshore and offshore facilities.

Since startup, ExxonMobil said the Sakhalin-1 project has produced more than 270 million bbl of oil for export to world markets. It also has supplied more than 210 bcf of associated gas to customers in Khabarovsk Krai, in far eastern Russia, to heat homes and meet growing energy needs.

The operator Exxon Neftegas Ltd. holds a 30% in the Sakhalin-1 consortium. Partners are Sakhalin Oil & Gas Development Co. Ltd. 30%; affiliates of Rosneft, the Russian state-owned oil company, RN-Astra 8.5%, Sakhalinmorneftegas-Shelf 11.5%; and Oil & Natural Gas Corp. Videsh Ltd. 20%.

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