Woodside Petroleum Ltd. spudded the Banambu Deep-1 wildcat in the Carnarvon basin offshore Western Australia as part of its campaign to prove up gas reserves for the Pluto LNG project extension.
The well is being drilled by Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc.’s Ocean America semisubmersible rig in permit WA-389-P and will evaluate the gas potential of the Mungaroo formation sands, which are a primary play type that have yielded gas in other parts of the basin. TD is expected to be 4,800 m.
The prospect was delineated following a comprehensive evaluation of seismic data and is on trend with both the Pluto and Chevron Corp.’s Wheatstone fields.
The Banambu Deep prospect has potential to contain 1.5 tcf of gas.
Cue Energy, with a 35% interest, has a free carry through the drilling of this well. Earlier this month BHP Billiton Petroleum farmed into the permit for a 40% interest, which is being earned by paying up to a capped amount for 100% of the drilling cost. Woodside has a 25% interest.
Woodside’s following well will be Anakie-1 in permit WA-269-P, which lies to the northeast of Pluto field.
This may be the last in the current program as Woodside MD Peter Coleman has indicated the company may call a temporary drilling halt. He said the “Pluto-boost” campaign hasn’t delivered what Woodside had hoped for a couple of years ago, i.e., enough gas to expand the Pluto LNG project.
A decision about the future drilling program will be made towards the end of this year and depends of the results of the Banambu Deep and Anakie wells.