Drilling/Production news briefs, Aug. 18

Santos�Tengasco�Marine Drilling�Esso Exploration�Petroleo Brasileiro�Rolls-Royce�Statoil�Ranger Oil (UK)�Shell UK�Maersk Contractors�Ranger Oil PC�Premier Pict Petroleum�Bow Valley�Roc Oil UK

Santos Ltd., Adelaide, said Aug. 17 that oil production from the Stag field in the Carnarvon Basin off Australia has increased over the last 10 days because of field development activity. Over the period, gross production exceeded 30,000 b/d of oil on five occasions and achieved a maximum rate of 31,000 b/d. Santos said the gross rate of production in the second quarter was 22,790 b/d. The increase, said Santos, comes from drilling Stag 21-H well and sidetracking Stag 15-H.

Tengasco Inc., Knoxville, Tenn., said it completed the newest oil well in its Swan Creek gas field in Hancock County, Tenn., in the upper zones of the field. The Paul Reed/R.D. Helton Unit No. 6 well was completed in the Ordovician Stones River formation from a 56 ft interval. The well is producing 120 b/d of oil. Combined with the production of the other three oil wells in the gas field, Swan Creek is producing 300 b/d.

Marine Drilling Cos. Inc., Sugar Land, Tex., said Friday that it and Esso Exploration Inc., an affiliate of ExxonMobil Corp., agreed to submit to arbitration the day rate in the drilling contract for the Marine 700 semisubmersible for the forthcoming year. Once determined, the new rate will be effective Aug. 5. The drilling contract with Esso calls for an annual review of the day rate, which could be raised from a base of $130,000 plus adjustments based on current market rates for comparable equipment subject to certain caps. The contract runs through Aug. 4, 2004, with the cap for the forthcoming year being $165,000 plus adjustments.

Petroleo Brasileiro SA has awarded a contract to Rolls-Royce PLC to upgrade the control systems of three Rolls-Royce gas turbine generator sets installed on the Petrobras Pargo I platform off Macae, Brazil. The turbogenerator sets provide power for the Pargo I, II, and III platforms, all located in Campos Field.

Norwegian company Statoil AS said production from its Sleipner East and West fields in the North Sea has been halted for a major turnaround. The Sleipner A, B, and T platforms shut down Aug. 14, with the first of these units due to resume production after 20 days and the other two after 24 days. Part of Sleipner A is to be modified because reservoir pressure is sinking as gas and condensate are produced. This shift to low-pressure production includes modifications to wells, inlet separators and recompression facilities, said Statoil. A process train for Sleipner condensate at Statoil's K�t� treatment complex north of Stavanger has also been closed down for maintenance during this period. Gas delivery commitments from Sleipner are being met by other fields during the shutdown, reports turnaround coordinator Sven T�mmer�

The Kyle joint venture said July 17 it signed an agreement for development of the field, located on block 29/2c in the UK North Sea. Estimated recoverable reserves of Kyle are 3.72 million tonnes of oil and 2.15 bcf of gas. Participating in the agreement are Ranger Oil (UK) Ltd. on behalf of the Kyle field owners, Shell UK Ltd. on behalf of the Curlew field owners and SEGAL owners, and Maersk Contractors, owner and operator of the Curlew floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) facility. Full field development is expected by March 2001. In the early years of Kyle production, the Curlew FPSO facilities will process production from both Kyle and Curlew. Ranger Oil Ltd., Calgary, operates the field. Kyle interest owners are Ranger Oil UK Ltd., 20%; Ranger Oil PC Ltd., 20%; Premier Pict Petroleum Ltd., 35%; Bow Valley Energy Ltd. holds 12.5%; and Roc Oil UK Ltd., 12.5%.

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