Santos hits gas pay with Burnside well off W. Australia

Santos Ltd., Adelaide, reported that its Burnside-1ST1 exploration well, drilled in permit WA-281-P in the Browse basin off Western Australia, found a 65-m gross natural gas column.

Rick Wilkinson
OGJ Correspondent

MELBOURNE, Aug. 13 -- Santos Ltd., Adelaide, reported that its Burnside-1ST1 exploration well, drilled in permit WA-281-P in the Browse basin off Western Australia, found a 65-m gross natural gas column.

Santos said wireline logs indicated the presence of gas through a relatively low permeability sandstone interval in the primary Lower Cretaceous Brewster sandstone target. Pressure data indicates the possibility of the gas column extending below the base of the sand.

The Brewster reservoir is the same as that of the Inpex group’s Ichthys field and Shell’s Prelude discovery, which lie a respective 40 km and 80 km northeast of Burnside.

Further appraisal will be needed to define the size of the find, which is a stratigraphic trap, but it is a satisfying result given the well had to be sidetracked after mechanical problems disrupted the early part of the program.

Burnside has been plugged and abandoned, but well samples will now be studied to determine reservoir characteristics and an appraisal drilling plan.

The well was drilled by the Songa Mecur semisubmersible drilling rig in 215 m of water.

Early estimates suggest Burnside has an upside potential of 100-500 million boe.

Santos is operator with 47.38%. Chevron Corp. has 24.83%, Inpex 20%, and Beach Petroleum 7.34%.

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