Nexus moving closer to Crux project completion

Rick Wilkinson
OGJ Correspondent

MELBOURNE, May 11 -- Nexus Energy Ltd., Melbourne, let a contract to Fluor Australia for the engineering work needed to bring the Crux field liquids project to the final investment decision (FID) stage by yearend. Crux field lies on production license AC/L9 in the Browse basin off Western Australia.

Based on the agreement, Nexus has the right to review Fluor’s initial work by the end of June. If this meets the required standard and FID is reached, the intention is for Fluor to continue assisting Nexus with the project.

Nexus has been trying to progress the Crux project for several years, but has been hampered by the collapse in 2008 of a $225 million (Aus.) deal with Japan’s Mitsui & Co. Ltd. to buy a 25% stake in the development. This was compounded by the global economic crisis.

The new agreement with Fluor is in addition to the recent appointment of the Wood Group for project management services.

Last month Nexus successfully completed the institutional component of it’s $122 million (Aus.) entitlement offer—a positive step towards raising funds for the Crux project.

The project
Nexus is operator of PL AC/L9 and holds 85% equity in the liquids resource; joint venture partner Osaka Gas holds the remaining 15%. Shell Development Australia holds the rights to 100% of the gas resource within the permit and under the current contract can access the gas in 2021.

Average water depth is 170 m with the major Crux reservoir at 3,800 m, according to Nexus.

Five intersections of the Crux field have been drilled to date and about 280 sq km of 3D seismic has been collected to delineate the structure. The Crux reservoir has high permeability and high porosity and the gas is low in carbon dioxide and other impurities.

“In addition to the Crux gas-condensate resource, upside potential has been identified around the undrilled Auriga and Caleum structures,” Nexus said.

It is proposed to develop the Crux field as a liquids stripping project. The development concept is based on four subsea production wells and four subsea gas reinjection wells tied back to a custom built leased floating production, storage, and offloading vessel.

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