Area Drilling

Sept. 10, 2007


Two wells on the Medianera block in the Neuquen basin intersected an oil column in the Cretaceous Quintuco formation, identifying a new field with large but unspecified areal extent, said Antrim Energy Inc., Calgary.

The M3001 and M3002 wells were drilled to 1,400 m. M3001 swab-tested 93 b/d of oil and 30 b/d of water from 12 m of net pay in Upper Quintuco. The well also flowed at rates as high as 3 MMcfd from Lower Quintuco under high pressure.

Antrim has 84 sq km of 3D seismic data that indicate the discovery’s lateral extent and is working to isolate the water zone. The company placed the oil zone on production and plans to test the M3002 well shortly.

Antrim holds 70% working interest in the block and plans to delineate the discovery and also bid for the adjacent Tres Nidos Sur license.


OMNIS awarded exploration license 34/07/TM in the Mozambique Channel west of the Morondava basin to EnerMad Corp., an affiliate of Pan African Mining Corp., Vancouver, BC.

The license covers 16,845 sq km and is subject to a profit sharing contract. EnerMad has identified targets at 3,500 m in 1,300 m of water.

EnerMad, managed by experienced Calgary personnel, said it has more than $2 million in cash and may go public this fall.


Sphere Petroleum QSC, Doha, Qatar, plans to take a farmout in exchange for an option to earn 50% interest from TransAtlantic Petroleum Corp., Calgary, in the 222,000-acre Tselfat exploration permit onshore in northern Morocco.

Sphere, with Australian ownership and the first 100% foreign owned company in Qatar, will fund a 110 sq km 3D seismic survey over abandoned Haricha field and the northern part of idle Bou Draa field in early 2008 and further geological studies to a maximum of $4.5 million (US).

If it exercises the option, Sphere will fund the drilling and testing of an exploratory well to 6,500 ft on a subthrust prospect and replace the company’s bank guarantee deposited with the Moroccan government.

TransAtlantic will remain operator of the permit through the exploration phase, which extends to May 2009. The permit contains Haricha, Tselfat, and Bou Draa fields discovered in or before the 1950s. The 3D survey and studies support possible redevelopment of Haricha and probe deeper prospectivity on the permit.

Provided that Sphere exercises the option, interests are TransAtlantic and Sphere 37.5% each, and Morocco’s Onhym is carried for 25% of costs in the exploration phase.


Exploration may be nearing on Block 5 north of Lake Albert in northwestern Uganda near the border with Sudan.

Orca Exploration Group Inc., Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands, took an option from Neptune Petroleum (Uganda) Ltd., a subsidiary of Tower Resources PLC, to earn a 50% interest in the 6,040 sq km license.

Tower plans to shoot 250-300 line-km of 2D seismic starting in November 2007 on the block (see map, OGJ, Sept. 4, 2006, p. 56).

Orca will fund 83.33% of the 2007 seismic program and certain past costs to a maximum $6 million carried cost. After data interpretation it will have the exclusive right to acquire a 50% working interest in Block 5 in return for funding 83.33% of two exploration wells to a maximum $10-15 million depending on whether the wells are tested.


The PetroCumarebo joint venture started gas production from La Vela field in the East Falcon Block at 10 MMcfd into Petroleos de Venezuela’s Interconnection Centro Occidente pipeline to the Paraguana peninsula refinery complex.

PetroFalcon Corp., Carpenteria, Calif., which owns 40% of PetroCumarebo, said the joint venture still has 12 MMcfd and 150 b/d of oil shut-in at Cumarebo field due to the ICO pipeline closure on Dec. 6, 2006. Management has been advised that these deliveries will resume in the fourth quarter of 2007.


PetroQuest Energy Inc., Lafayette, La., acquired several parcels of leases in the Fayetteville shale trend in the Arkoma basin, bringing its position to more than 17,000 net acres.

Most of the land is in Van Buren County, and more purchases are planned this year. PetroQuest plans to participate in the drilling of several nonoperated horizontal wells in the next few months.

The company also said it began operating a second rig in the Woodford shale in the basin in Oklahoma, where it has decided to explore alternatives for its 180 miles of gathering systems that haul 30 MMcfd of gas.


Royalite Petroleum Co. Inc., Austin, received a federal permit to drill an 8,500 ft wildcat to Lower Jurassic Navajo sandstone on the Central Utah Hingeline, where it holds more than 67,000 net acres.

Location for the Royalite Federal 27-1 is in 27-27s-3w, Piute County, 2 miles east of Marysvale, 26 miles south-southwest of Covenant oil and gas field, the Hingeline’s only discovery to date. The state drilling permit is also in hand.

The company, which has 100% working interest and 87.5% net revenue interest in the prospect, is pursuing numerous acquisitions in the 150-200 mile long trend.