Kerr-McGee to develop Red Hawk, create deepwater hub

Kerr-McGee Corp., Oklahoma City, has approved development of Red Hawk gas field in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, which—at more than 5,300 ft deep—is its deepest-water development to date.

By OGJ editors

HOUSTON, July 15 -- Kerr-McGee Corp., Oklahoma City, has approved development of Red Hawk gas field in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, which—at more than 5,300 ft deep—is its deepest-water development to date. First production is anticipated in second quarter 2004.

In developing the field, Kerr-McGee says it will use a "new, state-of-the-art mini-floating production facility" to develop the natural gas field, which is on Garden Banks Block 877.

The company is in the final stages of selecting the specific type of vessel for the facility, which is being designed to process 120 MMcfd of gas. Facility construction is scheduled to begin in October, with development drilling slated for early 2003.

The floating facility also will serve as a new processing hub for other area deepwater fields, including those of third parties, the company said.

"Use of a minifloater reduces the threshold reserve size for a stand-alone economic development in the deep waters," said Luke R. Corbett, Kerr-McGee chairman and CEO. "This innovation opens up an extensive area for deepwater exploration and future development, enabling Kerr-McGee to capitalize on our extensive inventory of deepwater prospects."

That inventory includes 181 undeveloped leases in the deepwater gulf that that will be explored in a joint venture formed earlier this year by Kerr-McGee Oil & Gas Corp.—the Kerr-McGee unit that operates Red Hawk, with a 50% interest—and its partner, Ocean Energy Inc., Houston, which holds the other 50% of Red Hawk (OGJ Online, Feb. 1, 2001). Kerr-McGee and Ocean hold interests in 27 blocks in the Red Hawk area, which offer additional satellite exploratory opportunities.

"Red Hawk, like Nansen, Boomvang, and Gunnison, will be a host structure to cost-effectively develop nearby satellite fields," said Kerr-McGee Senior Vice-Pres. Kenneth Crouch.

The Red Hawk development and processing hub will be 100 miles from Kerr-McGee's Gunnison development and 150 miles from the Nansen and Boomvang developments.

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