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Wintershall finding more oil in Bavarian foothills

Wintershall AG completed three exploratory wells in the Alpine foothills in southern Germany where it is using a helicopter-assisted electromagnetic exploration method.

The company found oil at the Aitingen Sud-2, Schwabmunchen-7, and Aitingen Nord-Ost-1 wells in November 2011 through January 2012 in the region south of Augsburg, where the company’s existing wells produced 219,000 bbl of oil in 2011. The three wells cost 7.5 million euros.

Crude oil from two of the new wells will flow via steel pipeline to Aitingen from May 2012, where it will be treated and then transported to the refinery in Lingen. The Aitingen Nord-Ost-1 is to be production-tested in April.

The three wells bring the total number of production wells operated by Wintershall in the Alpine foothills to 10.

Wintershall will fly daylight electromagnetic survey lines 100 m apart by helicopter during Feb. 29-Mar. 5 over 93 sq km of the Alpine foothills around GroBaitingen, Kleinaitingen, Graben, and parts of Wehringen.

The method is designed to detect electromagnetic fields in a certain frequency range in places where hydrocarbons lie underground. Wintershall said it is unable to determine the existence of hydrocarbons with the seismic methods previously used, and that the new method could give more direct indications, although drilling is ultimately still required.

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