Exploration/Development news briefs, Oct. 16

Vintage Petroleum � Magnum Hunter Resources � Remington Oil & Gas � Conoco � PetroVietnam � Korean National Oil � SK Corp. � Geopetrol � Aspen Group � CanArgo Energy � Isramco � BG International � Delek Drilling � Isramco Negev 2 � Clal Industries & Energy � IOC Dead Sea � Dor Chemicals � Israel Petrochemicals � Naphtha Explorations � Naphtha Israel Petroleum � Petrobras � Queiroz Galv

Vintage Petroleum Inc., Tulsa, said Friday it's begun initial testing operations on the Harmel No. 1 well, the second of four exploration wells drilled by Vintage on Block S-1 in the Republic of Yemen. The well tested oil from three separate shallow zones that have not previously produced in commercial quantities in this area of the Shabwah basin. The zones swab-tested at a combined rate of 500 b/d of 20� crude over a 5-day period. A longer-term production test is planned, and an appraisal well may be drilled. The rig was moved to the An-Naeem No. 2 to begin completion and testing operations of the Alif reservoir. Completion and testing of the Fordus No. 1 will follow An-Naeem No. 2.

Magnum Hunter Resources Inc., Irving, Tex., said it has participated in a new gas discovery on East Cameron Block 305. The well, in 193 ft of water 218 miles southwest of New Orleans, was drilled to a depth of 5,872 ft and logged 80 ft of pay in three separate sands. It will be temporarily abandoned with plans to set a production platform in early 2001. Previously, drilling operations on the block were halted after finding an abnormally pressured sand at 3,300 ft (OGJ Online, Aug. 22, 2000). Magnum Hunter owns a 25% working interest in this discovery and the operator, Remington Oil & Gas Corp., owns the remaining 75% working interest.

Houston-based Conoco Inc. said Wednesday that it estimates the flow rate of oil from its first exploratory well in Block 15-1 off Viet Nam is about 17,800 b/d. The discovery, made in late September, lies in the Cuu Long basin, 120 miles southeast of Ho Chi Minh City (OGJ Online, Sept. 27, 2000). The rate is based on combined well tests of more than 12,600 b/d from three zones and an additional estimated 5,200 b/d from three other zones. More wells will be drilled on the block in first quarter 2001. Conoco also plans exploratory drilling on several other blocks off Viet Nam next year. The company holds a 23.25% interest in Block 15-1. Other partners are PetroVietnam, 50%; Korean National Oil Co., 14.25%; SK Corp., 9%; and Geopetrol, 3.5%.

Aspen Group said the Casey No. 2 natural gas well in Pittsburgh County, Okla., was completed in the Atoka formation at depths of 6,576-6,748 ft. The well tested at 2.2 MMcfd on a 1-in. choke with flowing tubing pressure of 80 psi. Aspen owns a 13.302% working interest in the well. The company also said the Sidmore No. 6-35 gas well in Coal County, Okla, was completed in the Cromwell formation. It tested at 2.6 MMcfd of gas on an 18/64-in. choke with flowing tubing pressure of 610 psi. Aspen holds 1.043% working interest in the well.

CanArgo Energy Corp. on Wednesday reported on the progress of the N97 well being drilled on the Ninotsminda field in the Republic of Georgia. The well unexpectedly encountered gas and oil shows in the Sarmatian and Upper Eocene sequences at approximately 1,960-2,100 m depth and another starting at about 2,240 m depth. The well was targeted for a large gas prospect at the Cretaceous sequence at approximately 4,000 m. Heavy mud losses occurred, however, resulting in the well being drilled to only 2,249 m. CanArgo plans to re-spud the well for the Cretaceous at an adjacent location. Reaching the Cretaceous target will be delayed by at least 2 months, said the company. The new well may appraise the new sequences.

Isramco Inc. said a new study of Nir field in the Med Ashdod license off Israel estimates gas reserves in place in the field at 274 bcf of gas. The partners authorized Isramco, as operator, to request the Israeli Petroleum Commissioner to extend the period of the license. The operator also proposed a new 3D seismic survey over the Yam structure in the northern and central part of the license. The partners were asked to approve the work program and a budget of $3.1 million no later than Oct. 19, 2000. Interests in the block are BG International Ltd., 35%; Delek Drilling LP, 21.76%; Isramco Negev 2 LP, 19.13%; Clal Industries & Energy, 7.8%; IOC Dead Sea LP, 5.05%; Dor Chemicals, 3.6%; Israel Petrochemicals, 3.6%; Naphtha Explorations LP, 1.84%; Naphtha Israel Petroleum Corp., 1.84%; and operator Isramco Inc., 0.36%.

Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras) has discovered natural gas reservoirs with its 1-BRSA-14-BAS well on block BCAM-40 in the Camamu basin off Brazil's Bahia state. The first reservoir, similar to the Agua Grande formations, was found at a depth of 1,180 m, and is 14 m deep. The second reservoir, in the Sergi formation, was discovered at 1,410 m. It is 186 m deep. Petrobras operates and owns a 35% stake in the block. Its partners are Brazilian companies Queiroz Galv�(55%) and Petroserv (10%). The well is 10 km off Brazil in 38 m of water. It reached final depth of 1,828 m and has reached the final logging stage. Initial production tests are scheduled to start next week.

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