ExxonMobil Corp. affiliate Esso Exploration & Production Guyana Ltd. encountered 197 ft of high-quality, oil-bearing sandstone following the drilling of the Hammerhead-1 well offshore Guyana, proving a new play concept for potential development.
The well was drilled to 18,057 ft in 3,373 ft of water. The oil discovery marks the fifth on the Stabroek block in the past year and its ninth offshore Guyana.
Drilling by the Stena Carron drillship commenced on July 27.
Hammerhead-1 is 13 miles southwest of the Liza-1 exploration well. It follows previous discoveries on the Stabroek block at Pacora, Liza, Payara, Liza Deep, Snoek, Turbot, Ranger, and Longtail (OGJ Online, May 20, 2015;Jan. 12, 2017;Mar. 30, 2017;Oct. 5, 2017;Jan. 5, 2018; Feb. 28, 2018; and June 20, 2018).
“Development options for Hammerhead will take into account ongoing evaluation of reservoir data, including a well test,” said Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Co.
Previous discoveries led to an estimated recoverable resource of more than 4 billion boe discovered to date, and the potential for up to five floating production, storage, and offloading vessels producing more than 750,000 b/d by 2025, ExxonMobil said.
There is potential for additional production from undrilled targets and plans for rapid exploration and appraisal drilling. A second exploration vessel, the Noble Tom Madden, is scheduled to arrive in Guyana in October to accelerate exploration of high potential opportunities. It will begin drilling at the Pluma prospect 17 miles from Turbot.
Liza Phase 1, which is expected to begin producing oil by early 2020, will use the Liza Destiny FPSO vessel to produce up to 120,000 b/d of oil (OGJ Online, June. 12, 2018). Construction of the FPSO and subsea equipment is well advanced.
Pending government and regulatory approvals, Phase 2 is targeted for sanctioning by yearend. It will use a second FPSO designed to produce up to 220,000 b/d of oil and is expected to be producing in 2022. A third development, Payara, will target sanctioning in 2019 and use an FPSO designed to produce 180,000 b/d of oil as early as 2023.
Esso E&P Guyana is operator and holds a 45% interest in the Stabroek block. Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd. holds 30% interest and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Ltd. holds 25% interest.