Vulcan Minerals Inc., St. John’s, Newf., said a core hole program has indicated that the Flat Bay shallow light oil deposit underlies an estimated 8-10 sq km in southwestern Newfoundland.
The dark brown, 34-36° gravity oil with less than 1% sulfur is primarily in low-permeability conglomerates and sandstones in the Ship Cove and Fischell’s Brook formations. The oil has a pour point of 9°, which exceeds the reservoir temperature at the shallow depths currently intersected, so the oil does not flow.
A qualified reservoir engineering group will review results from the core drilling program in order to formulate a pilot project to extract the oil. A total of 14 core holes have been drilled in the general area south of the Port au Port peninsula.
An input of energy will be required to stimulate flow, said Vulcan, which shares interests in the project 50-50 with Investcan Energy Corp.
The most recent core drilling involved six holes with a combined 1,673 m, and the target reservoirs were oil bearing in three of the six. Rig capacity limited the depth of the holes, and as a result it was not possible to penetrate the reservoirs completely.
The gross thickness of the oil-bearing Fischell’s Brook formation in the Flat Bay-1 discovery well was 100 m.
The formations were deeper than expected and beyond the rig’s depth capacity at core hole 5, but minor live oil shows were encountered in a sandy lense in an anhydrite that overlies the unpenetrated target formations.
Holes 4 and 9 were drilled updip of the discovery well and encountered shallow basement without any oil-bearing target intervals, though both found live oil shows in basement fractures.