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The 5th Biennial Petroleum Geology Conference

The 5th Biennial Petroleum Geology Conference Exploration Revived 2013 Grieghallen, Bergen 18-20 March 2013

Exploration Revived 2013

Grieghallen, Bergen 18-20 March 2013


Contents Abstract Page • The future of NCS exploration – New plays/areas (Key Note) 4 •



• The future of NCS exploration – New plays/areas (Key Note)


• Skrugard – a breakthrough in the Barents Sea


• Play types and prospectivity on and around the Loppa High


• Veslemøy High, Barents Sea: Geology and plays


• The Caurus discovery, Barents Sea – A new look at the middle Triassic Kobbe formation


• Petroleum geology of Nordland VI, VII and Troms II


• Finding Arctic oil giants: How to risk Barents Sea uplift and erosion?


• From Heidrun to the Outer Vøring Margin:

Lessons learned in search of a westward extension to the prolific Halten Terrace Jurassic oil play


• Permian stratigraphy of the Southern Nordland Ridge, Haltenbanken: Results from recent exploration drilling


• How innovative thinking can lead to exploration success? (Key Note)


• The Edvard Grieg – Johan Sverdrup exploration history and future area potential


• Unfolding the complex geology and outline of the giant Johan Sverdrup discovery through appraisal drilling and subsurface modelling


• The Butch oil discovery


• King Lear: Rewriting the play


• Hunting for subtle traps – Geology to technology


• The Mamba complex supergiant gas discovery:

An example of turbidite fans modified by deepwater tractive bottom currents


• Successful exploration in mature areas: Recipe from Revus and Agora stories (Key Note)


• Revived exploration on the flanks of Troll


• The 35/9-6S Titan discovery


• The 35/9-7 Skarfjell discovery


Quick tip: Use this table of contents to navigate. Click an abstract to view its first page.

Programme committee

Programme committee • Odd Ragnar Heum , Det norske oljeselskap (chair) • Tim J. Austin ,

• Odd Ragnar Heum, Det norske oljeselskap (chair)

• Tim J. Austin, ConocoPhillips Norge

• Tore Berg, Agora Oil

• Kari Berge, A/S Norske Shell

• Marcello Cecchi, Wintershall Norge

• Frode Fasteland, Statoil

• Kees Jongepier, Svenska Petroleum Exploration

• Dag Helland-Hansen, Tellus Petroleum

• Jorun M. Ormøy, Eni Norge

• Jan Strømmen, Maersk Oil Norway

• Wenche Tjelta Johansen, Norwegian Petroleum Directorate

• Viggo Tjensvoll, Centrica Energi

• Håkon Østhus, Core Energy

The future of NCS exploration – New plays/areas

Sissel Eriksen, Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD)


The NPD has revised its resource estimates and quantified the total expected undiscovered recoverable resources at 2590 million standard cubic metres (Sm 3 ) of oil equivalents (o.e.). The table below shows the numbers and uncertainty range.






mill/bill Sm 3

mill/bill Sm 3

mill/bill Sm 3













The previous estimate from 2010 was 20 million Sm 3 o.e. lower. Approximately 270 million Sm 3 o.e. have been discovered since the previous estimate which means that the NPD has a more positive view on the undiscovered potential than before.

In the North Sea, the southern part of the Utsira High and the Tampen Spur area account for the most significant resource estimate changes. The Johan Sverdrup discovery, located on the southern part of the Utsira High, indicates that there is more oil and less gas in the area than estimated in 2010. A new play has been defined which reflects this better than previous plays.

As regards the Barents Sea, undiscovered oil resources have been adjusted upwards, and gas resources have been decreased. This is mainly due to a changed perception of the possibility of finding oil in the area around Skrugard.

The estimate for the Norwegian Sea has not changed appreciably.

The resource estimates cover the same geographic area as the analysis from 2010 and previous analyses and does not include the Norwegian part of the previously area with overlapping claims in the Barents Sea south-east and the waters off Jan Mayen.

During the summers of 2011 and 2012 the NPD accomplished a successful acquisition of 2 D seismic in the new Norwegian areas in the Barents Sea and on the Jan Mayen Ridge. In 2012 2 D seismic was aquired off the coast of Helgeland. In these areas about 48 000 km of seismic lines were acquired. In the north eastern part of the the Barents Sea the acquisition will continue this summer.

Based on the seismic data acquired the NPD has evaluated the petroleum potential and estimated the undiscovered resources in the southern part of the new area in the Barents Sea and on the Jan Mayen Ridge. These new estimates are input to the White Paper that is planned to be forwarded to the parliament before this summer.

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The seismic data that has been acquired off the coast of Helgeland is a part of the government’s “Kunnskapsinnhentingen” in the northeastern part of the Norwegian Sea. The result of the evaluation of these data will be presented later this year.

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Skrugard A Breakthrough in the Barents Sea

Björn Lindberg (presenter) & Skrugard Exploration Teams in Statoil, Eni Norge & Petoro

Expectations and activity levels have varied considerably since the Barents Sea was opened for exploration more than 30 years ago. The first discoveries in the Hammerfest Basin (Askeladd, 1981) caused great optimism, which turned to disappointment and pessimism towards the late 1980’s; discoveries were mainly gas with low commercial value at the time, a dramatic drop in oil price and dry wells on large structures outside the Hammerfest Basin. After a period of no wells in the late 1990’s, the Goliat discovery in 2000 caused renewed optimism and was the first commercial oil discovery in the Barents Sea. However, there were still no discoveries of sufficient size for new infrastructure outside of the Hammerfest Basin.

The PL532 license, regarded as the 20 th round “golden blocks” by the industry, was awarded to Statoil (Operator, 50%), Eni Norge (30%) and Petoro (20%) in May 2009. Skrugard was classified as an impact prospect (> 250 mmboe) and became a prioritized drilling candidate for 2011.

The Skrugard discovery in April 2011 represented a breakthrough for exploration activities in the Barents Sea, and was labeled “the most important discovery in ten years on the Norwegian shelf”. The discovery was a result of experience, perseverance, and team work. Up until the discovery, Statoil had participated in all 87 exploration wells, and operated ~64 of these. Partners Eni Norge and Petoro have also been among the few stayers with continuous exploration activity in the Barents Sea.

Less than nine months after the Skrugard discovery, the Havis discovery in a neighbouring structure was made, totaling the proven recoverable oil volumes to 400-600 mmbls in addition to the gas caps. A field development project was established shortly after the Skrugard discovery, and is presently in the concept selection phase.

The Lower Middle Jurassic play was unproven in the Bjørnøya Basin/Bjørnøyrenna Fault Complex until the Skrugard well was drilled. In the nearby well 7219/9-1 drilled by Norsk Hydro in 1988, there were good oil shows in the Stø and Nordmela Formation sandstones, indicating that this structure failed due to leakage. The trap seal was therefore considered to be the main risk prior to drilling. The Skrugard discovery well confirmed the top and lateral seal provided by the Fuglen and Kolmule/Kolje formations, and that these can hold >150 m hydrocarbon column with an overburden of < 900 m.

The Skrugard well proved the presence of a good to excellent reservoir in the Stø, Nordmela and Tubåen formations. Also in the Fruholmen and the uppermost Snadd formations good sandstones were encountered, suggesting these formations to be potential reservoirs elsewhere.

The entire license area is covered with 3D seismic. Direct Hydrocarbon Indicators (DHI’s), prominent on Skrugard, present on Havis, and, in hindsight, somewhat more dubious on the dry 7219/9-1 structure were recognised. As such, important calibration points for the geophysical observations are established. DHI’s of varying strength and confidence have also been identified in numerous other structures within

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the license boundaries. These include flat-spots, amplitude conformance, intra-reflectivity brightening, and AVO anomalies.

On the basis of the seismic assessment, prospect ranking was performed and decision to drill Skrugard was made. Before the Skrugard well was drilled in 2011, EM resistivity images of the subsurface across the Skrugard prospect were obtained and used by Statoil for estimations of the hydrocarbon saturation. The resistivity distribution was derived from extensive data analysis of multi-client CSEM data from 2008. After the discovery, prospect specific CSEM data was acquired on a proprietary basis by Statoil, and the data was used for calibration of discoveries.

The discoveries need to be seen in light of the exploration history in the Barents Sea, and are important for several reasons; as new reserves for the involved companies, establishment of new infrastructure, and to remove some of the myths linked to the Barents Sea as an exploration province dominated by fatal leakage and gas only. In addition, the Bjørnøya Basin with neighbouring areas had, prior to the Skrugard discoveries, several dry wells making it empirically the area with lowest success in the Barents Sea. Discoveries in this area increase expectations that adjacent areas can contain commercial potential.

A second exploration wave is planned for the area and will target four wells, starting with the Nunatak prospect with reservoir of Cretaceous age. The subsequent three prospects are of Jurassic age and of varying depth, volume and probability of success, and will all in a success case be a part of the Skrugard/Havis development.

in a success case be a part of the Skrugard/Havis development. Biennial Geophysical Seminar 7 Biennial

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Fig. 1: Regional overview of Barents Sea with Top Stø depth map, showing the location

Fig. 1: Regional overview of Barents Sea with Top Stø depth map, showing the location of the Skrugard and Havis discoveries within the Bjørnøyrenna Fault Zone on the western flank of the Barents Sea. Structural elements from Norwegian Petroleum Directorate.

Fig. 2: Semi-regional map of Top Stø Fm depicting the faulted terrace setting in which the discoveries were made.

Fig. 3: Seismic line with overlain interpretation and stratigraphic units crossing the Skrugard and Havis discoveries as well as the structure on which the dry 7219/9-1 well was drilled. Seismic courtesy of WesternGeco.

Figure 4: Vertical resistivity section through the Skrugard well (left panel) and the 7219/9-1 well (from Nordskag et al. 2013)

Nordskag, J. I., Kjøsnes, Ø., Hokstad, K. and Nguyen, A. K. [2013] CSEM in the Barents Sea, Part III: Joint interpretation of CSEM and seismic inversion results. Submitted to 75 th Annual International Meeting, EAGE, Expanded Abstract.

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Play types and prospectivity on and around the Loppa High

Harald Brunstad,Trond Kristensen and Espen T. Ulvesæter Lundin Norway AS


Lundin Norway has actively explored the area on and around the Loppa High since the award of Lundin’s first exploration license in the Barents sea in 2007. A large number of plays have been investigated and matured, spanning from basement to Paleogene. The presentation will give an overview of relevant geological elements and plays in the area seen from Lundin Norway’s perspective.

Example of Triassic channels
Example of Triassic channels

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Vesl emøy H igh, Bar ents Se a: Geolo gy and P Plays

Janne Guttorms en, Noemí Tur, Mich ele Comiss o, Pieter P estman R epsol Expl oration No rge AS, O lo

Intro duction


Trom sø Basin to the SE, and

actua lly is a pale o-high, activ e during the latest Cretac eous and ea rliest Tertiar y (Figure 2) .

Veslemøy H igh is locat ed in the we sternmost p ortion of th e Barents Se ea, in-betwe en the

1). It

the Sørves tsnaget and Bjørnøya b

sins to the

NW (Figure


After the breakup

marg in character ized by pro grading sed imentation

Creta ceous and

Terti ary Unconfo rmity (BTU ). In places

clear ly angular, r eflecting upl ift due to loc calized comp ressional co nditions.

Cretaceous i n the weste rnmost Bare nts Sea is c haracterized by a series

of Scandin avia and Gre enland, the

Tertiary and

of faulted b locks.

westernmost Barents Sea became a p assive

Quaternary . The

during the


(such as t he Veslemø y High), thi s unconform ity is

Tertiary me gasequences s are separa ted by a m ajor uncon formity, the

Licen se PL531, c urrently ope rated by Re psol Explor ation Norge AS, is locate ed on the so uthern

porti on of the V eslemøy Hig h, covering

shap e (Figure 3). The present paper focus es on this po rtion of the Veslemøy H igh.

BTU, has a dome

a structure that, at the l evel of the


sched duled to be s pudded in F ebruary 201 3 on PL531 . Reference wells includ e 7219/8-1

close st well, at 46

now, the


High has no ot been dril led. An ex ploration w ell, 7218/11 -1, is

S (the

km distanc e), 7216/11- 1 S, and 731 6/5-1.

-1, is S (the km distanc e), 7216/11- 1 S, and 731 6/5-1. Figu re 1.

Figu re 1. Locatio n map, show ing referen ce wells and discoveries/ fields.

Tect onic Setting

Even though the Veslemøy H igh is consid ered to be a n “antiform shaped by th e BTU”, the re are

good structural-g eological ev idences for struc ture:

considering the “Veslem øy Anticline ” as a multi -event

L ate Cretace ous syn-kine matic episo de: listric sh allow rooted faults affec ting the earl y Late C retaceous s equences on the top of th e structure.

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P ost-kinemat ic “latest C retaceous” e vent, resulti ng in gener al truncation nal attitude

of the

B TU through out the ant icline (as th e Upper Cr etaceous seq uences are b een eroded) .

supposed to


E arly Paleoc ene syn-kine matic episod e: progressi ve onlappin e astern limb of the struct


of Lower P aleocene str ata on

L ate Paleoce ne post-kine matic episod e: no activit y (or very m ild activity).


E ocene syn-k inematic ep isode: progr essive erosi on of the BT U on the w estern limb of the s tructure.


seismic im aging is ver y poor on

the deeper

section but

it is possi ble to supp ose a

deco upling of the structuratio n from the v ery defined geometries o f the overly ing section. In this


“zon e of tension ” of a glide d system w hile there a re, up to no w, no clear expe cted “toe c ompression” . This impl ies a regio nal detachm ent slightly

correspond to the

of the


Creta ceous Unco nformity (B CU; in some areas, the B CU itself is acting as a d ecollement level):

the B CU is separ ating two di ferent rheol ogical syste ms.

the heavily

rotated fau lted blocks

on the top

of the struc ure should


above the

Whil e the “re-ac tion” throug h gliding is

“Ves lemøy Anti cline” is sti ll uncertain:


sugg ested by the gliding)? Or a combinati on of the tw o?

clearer, the

giving rise to the

deeply-roo ted (obeyin g to rejuven ated old re gional

to the rhe ological pa rtition

nature of t he “action”

affecting t he Caledon ides) or sha llow detach ed (obeyin

Acco rding to the

(napp e geometrie s) are playin g a major ro le in the evo lution of the structure: th he Veslemøy is ov erlying a pre -Jurassic ba sement high.

ongoing re gional inter pretation, th e pre-existi ng shapes o f the Caled onides


th e pre-existi ng shapes o f the Caled onides High Figu re 2. W-E se

Figu re 2. W-E se ismic line th rough the V eslemøy Hig h, indicating (circled) th e Cretaceou s play below the B ase Tertiary Unconformi ty (BTU), an d the Paleo cene play ab ove the BTU .

Strat igraphy


the a rea of the V eslemøy Hi

inter est is assume d to be Cret aceous to Te rtiary in age (Figure 4).

sedimentary succession

of the Baren ts Sea is Pa leozoic to Q uaternary in age. Howe ver, in

h, the pre-C retaceous s uccession is very deep,

and the inter val of

Beca use of the u ncertain cor relation bet ween the ref erence well

not p ossible to d etermine w ith certainty

unde rlying the B TU. Howeve r, the packa ge is most l ikely Cretac eous in age:

Uppe r Cretaceou s. Based on the seismic

and the Ve eslemøy are a, it is

the age of the sedime ntary succes ssion immed iately

Aptian-Albi an, or

imaging and data from n earby wells, the Cretace ous is

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expe cted to be s hale-domina ted, with su bordinate sa ndy interval s. The Cret aceous sand stones

are e xpected to b e turbiditic,

as they are a long the Lop pa High and in Mid-Nor way.


domi nated clasti cs with subo rdinate san dstones. The se sandston es have bee n drilled in a few


reser voir quality in some pla ces. Over th e Veslemøy absen t, due to on lap onto the paleo-high ( Figure 2).

High, the l ower part o f the Paleoc ene is

be turbidit ic, with exc ellent

BTU is over lain by the Paleocene-O ligocene To rsk Formati on, that con sists of clay stone-


S and 731 6/5-1), whe re they we re found to


upper Plioce ne-Quaterna ry, periglaci al Nordland Group caps the sediment tary successi on.

al Nordland Group caps the sediment tary successi on. Figure 3. Ma p of Base T

Figure 3. Ma p of Base T ertiary (BTU ).

Play s and Petrol eum System Two plays have b een identifi ed on the Ve slemøy Hig

(Figure 2):

Creta ceous turbi dites in hal -grabens un derneath th e BTU. The

partl y stratigraph ic (truncatio n against the e BTU). If t

woul d correspon d to the NP D’s bju,kl-3

new play name w ould be requ ired, e.g. bk u-2.

trap is par tly structura l, and

e turbidites are Aptian- Albian in ag e, this

play. If the y turn out to be Late Cr etaceous in age, a

Pale ocene beds

(probably t urbidite san dstones), o nlapping the

BTU. The

trap is ba sically

strati graphic, wit h a structur al componen t. This is a new play: a


version of




Unce rtainties exi st regarding the petroleu m systems o f these plays :

So ource rock

and timing.

The only

proven sour ce rock in

the area, th e Upper Ju rassic


ekkingen Fo rmation, is currently ov ermature ov er most of t he area aro und the Ves lemøy


igh; most of the hydroc arbon expuls ion may ha ve occurred before trap f formation. S everal


retaceous an d Paleogene source rock s are known , but it is no

clear how t hey are deve loped

in the surroun dings of the Veslemøy H igh.

R eservoirs. T he targeted i ntervals, Pa leocene and Middle-Upp er Cretaceo us, do not c ontain


ndstones in

any of the

reference w ells. The b est analogu es for the f ormer are E ocene


ndstones in wells 7216/ 11-1 S and 7 316/5-1, wh ile for the la tter, Cretace eous sandsto nes in


id-Norway and the north ern Hamme rfest Basin

may be used as analogue s.

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P reservation.

Some leaka ge along fau lts has occu rred as indi cated by gas

clouds visi ble on

se ismic.

Figu re 4. Strati graphy of

Norw egian B arents S ea,


show ing reservo irs and sou rce


relevant fo r the Veslem øy


(based on

Worsley 2


and L arssen et al 2005).

Darw in Prospec t An e xploratory w ell, 7218/11 -1,

the Veslem øy

High : on the Da rwin prosp ect,

locat ed

southeast ern

porti on.

Paleo zoic and C retaceous pl ays

are p resent and


well is scheduled in Fe bruary 2013 .

to be spud ded


be drilled on






can be tes ted

one well. T he explorat ion

The t rap of the D arwin prosp ect is str atigraphic w ith a structu ral comp onent (Figu re 5).

expected res ervoirs are t wo


comp onent (Figu re 5). expected res ervoirs are t wo the The sands tone interv


sands tone interv als: one at

base of the Paleo cene, the oth er near the t op of the Cr etaceous suc cession.

the oth er near the t op of the Cr etaceous suc cession. Figure 5. W-E

Figure 5. W-E seismic line throug h the Darwi

prospect, i ndicating we ll position.

Ackn owledgeme nts


Faro e Petroleum

Ener gy Norge AS ) for permis sion to prese ent this pape r.

authors than k the partne rs in license PL531 (Co ncedo ASA, Det norske

Norge AS,


Oil Norge

AS, RWE D ea Norge A

oljeselskap ASA, AS, and Tal isman

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The Caurus discovery, Barents Sea – A new look at the middle Triassic Kobbe formation

Camilla Oftebro and Carsten Elfenbein, Det Norske ASA


PL659 Caurus, awarded February 2012 (APA 2011), is located on the Bjarmeland Platform. It is defined as a footwall uplift structure situated along the northern part of the Asterias fault complex, and includes the Caurus discovery (well 7222/11-­‐1T2) made by Statoil in 2008 in production license


Det norske is the operator of PL659 and the licensees are Petoro, Lundin Petroleum, Spring (now Tullow oil), Rocksource and Valiant Petroleum. A firm well is planned in Q4 2013 and 3D seismic acquisition is planned in 2014/2015.

Q4 2013 and 3D seismic acquisition is planned in 2014/2015. Figure1: Location of PL659. Well 7222/11-­‐1

Figure1: Location of PL659.

Well 7222/11-­‐1 was drilled with the objectives to prove hydrocarbons in the Triassic Snadd formation and in the Middle Triassic Kobbe Formation. The well proved gas in channelized sandstones of the Snadd Formation with a gas-­‐water contact and also gas and oil at two levels in the Kobbe Formation (Anisian); oil in an Upper Anisian reservoir and gas and oil in a lower Upper Anisian reservoir. The discovery was considered sub-­‐commercial and the license was relinquished in 2010.

The Kobbe Formation reservoir in the discovery well on Caurus encountered low net to gross ratios and generally poor porosity and permeability. The same marginal reservoir quality is seen in other wells in the Bjarmeland area. Hence the reservoir potential of the Kobbe Formation has commonly been perceived as limited.

In 2011 the gas discovery well 7225/3-­‐1 on the Norvarg Dome delivered encouraging production test results from an interval which is directly correlatable to the main reservoir in Caurus well 7222/11-­‐1.

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This lead to a re-­‐evaluation and a more positive view of the production properties of the Kobbe Formation on Caurus. In addition, recent results from other wells in the area and in particular conclusions after seismic special studies – spectral decomposition/RGB blending, seismic inversion, and AVO, gives reasons to believe that the Kobbe formation may have substantial commercial potential.

Play summary

The Caurus structure developed during the Jurassic – early Cretaceous by footwall uplift along the north-­‐eastern flank of the Asterias fault complex, the fault that separates the Bjarmeland Platform from the Hammerfest Basin.

The main resource potential within the license is situated within the large Caurus three way dip closure in the Anisian Kobbe formation, fault bounded by the Asterias Fault Complex towards southeast( figure 2).

by the Asterias Fault Complex towards southeast( figure 2). Figure 2: Top Kobbe depth structure map

Figure 2: Top Kobbe depth structure map with spill contour outlined in white.

The younger Carnian Snadd Formation with its channelized sandstone reservoirs is considered an upside potential.

The Triassic evolution of the area is dominated by seismic-­‐scale prograding transgressive-­‐regressive sequences sourced mainly from the Uralides, possibly with minor contribution from Fennoscandia. The main reservoir of the Kobbe Formation is composed of sandstones and heteroliths deposited in shallow-­‐ to marginal marine settings during Anisian time. These include tidal channels and –bars, bayfill and fluvial distributaries. At this stage it is too early to conclude on the trapping and sealing mechanism of the reservoir. It is assumed that the Asterias Fault Complex behaves as a sealing fault for the 3-­‐way dip closure, and robust top and base seals are provided by extensive shale intervals representing flooding surfaces. MDT pressure points from the hydrocarbon zone in the Kobbe Formation in well 7222/11-­‐1 show no connectivity between the two different Anisian reservoir zones. Also, the well proved hydrocarbons down to a depth that is about 140m deeper than the mapped spill at Top Kobbe level. Hence multiple stacked reservoir zones seem likely, and the modest

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hydrocarbon columns encountered by the well could be controlled by local stratigraphic (or structural) traps.

The Kobbe Formation gas play is assumed sourced from the underlying and inter fingering organic-­‐ rich mudrocks of the Klappmyss and Kobbe formations.

From 3D seismic data, numerous channel features are mapable at different stratigraphic levels within the Kobbe Formation. Spectral decomposition techniques reveal a network of sinuous, relatively narrow channels on the one hand and wider and straighter channels on the other hand. The latter possibly indicating a relatively sand prone distributary channel system. Examples from spectral decomposition are shown in figure 3. Especially two big channel geometries, the Langlitinden prospect and the Snøtinden prospect, are clearly distinguished and are considered as the two main prospects in the Kobbe formation.


as the two main prospects in the Kobbe formation. . Figure 3: Examples of seismically visible

Figure 3: Examples of seismically visible channels at different levels in the Kobbe formation from spectral decomposition analysis (RGB blend).

Objectives and challenges

The key challenges and key risks on Caurus are believed to be related to reservoir quality and trap geometry. Grain size comprises the primary control on the reservoir properties and for commercial production coarser than very fine grained sandstone is necessary. The trap geometry is still not fully understood and the real trap could be a much more limited stratigraphic /structural trap than the hitherto mapped closure.

It is believed that well 7222/11-­‐1 on Caurus, alongside with all other wells drilled in the Bjarmeland area, is not optimally placed to test the Kobbe Formation. The license group has been working towards an optimal placement for the second exploration well on Caurus, where the main objective is to target and test one of the main channelized sandstones visible from seismic analysis. The aim is to prove better reservoir properties, prove commercial production rates (by DST) and to evaluate HC-­‐contacts. We also hope the planned well will give valid information about the trapping mechanism in the Kobbe formation, and a better overall understanding of the complex palaeo-­‐ depositional environments in the Bjarmeland area.

Det norske would like to acknowledge the partners for constructive contribution to the license work.

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Petroleum geology of Nordland VI, VII and Troms II

Ketil Kaada, Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD)


Kjetil Kaada, Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, P. O. Box 600, 4003 Stavanger, Norway

The offshore areas off Nordland and Troms are regarded by the petroleum industry as one of the most attractive new areas for petroleum exploration. Due to environmental and fishery concerns, only parts of this area have so far been open for exploration. Since 2001, the whole area has been closed.

As part of the management plan for the Barents Sea and the sea areas off the Lofoten Islands it was decided in 2006 to acquire more information, investigating all relevant issues. The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate has, as a part of this plan, conducted an independent evaluation of the petroleum geology and petroleum resource potential of these areas.

The offshore area close to the Lofoten Islands has a varied and interesting geology. The continental shelf is here at its narrowest, in some places narrower than 20 kilometers. From the outer edge of the continental shelf, the seabed plunges down to abyssal depths greater than 2,500 meters below sea level.












Location Map





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The Lofoten crystalline basement rocks represent structural highs surrounded by sedimentary basins. The most prominent high is the Lofoten Ridge. To the west of the Lofoten Ridge is the Ribban Basin. This basin is filled with sedimentary rocks of Jurassic and Cretaceous age. North of the Lofoten Ridge is the Harstad Basin, characterized by strong subsidence in the Jurassic and Cretaceous. The basin is

filled with a thick sedimentary sequence of Cretaceous age. Fault blocks were formed in the area in the Triassic and Jurassic, and reactivated in the Cretaceous and Paleogene.

The potential reservoir rocks in the area consist of Triassic, Jurassic, Cretaceous and Paleogene sandstones. It is also possible that fractured and eroded basement can have reservoir properties.

The main source rock for oil and gas in the area is of Late Jurassic age. The source rock is assumed to be sufficiently deeply buried to expel hydrocarbons in the Ribban and Harstad Basins.

Coastal areas of the northern part of Nordland County and southern part of Troms County were subjected to an extensive uplift and subsequent erosion. This uplift took place from Late Cretaceous to Neogene. As a consequence of the uplift, the continental margin was strongly tilted down towards the west. Some pre-­‐existing faults were passively tilted, some were reactivated or inverted. The strongest tilt occurs where the margin is the narrowest. Sediment transport postdating the uplift was directed towards the south and the north of Lofoten, indicating that this area remained topographically high. Many identified prospects are located in uplifted areas. This may have led to increased leakage of hydrocarbons from the traps.

In this talk, an overview of the petroleum geology will be presented including the geological and geophysical challenges that were part of the evaluation.

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Title: Finding Arctic Oil Giants: How to risk Barents Sea uplift and erosion ?


Maersk Oil New Ventures Exploration Team, Stavanger, Norway


Paul Henry Nadeau, Maersk Oil Norway AS, Norway

Abstract: Exploration challenges in sedimentary basins which have undergone significant amounts of uplift and erosion (U&E) include: arresting source rock maturation, reduction of reservoir pressure and temperature, gas expansion, reduction of confining stress, and seal/trap failure. These challenges, particularly along the structurally complex Barents Sea margin (Figure 1) require that both the magnitude as well as the timing of U&E events in the burial/thermal history be accurately estimated and integrated into petroleum systems considerations. Such analyses often show that trap preservation with respect to hydrocarbon charge becomes a major risk factor. Geological models for oil and gas entrapment demonstrate that the vast majority of reserves occur in relatively narrow depth intervals, mainly determined by the geothermal gradient and maximum reservoir temperature (Bjørkum and Nadeau, 1998; Nadeau et al., 2005; Nadeau, 2011). Applying this methodology to the Barents Sea shows a clear depth interval which includes the bulk of discovered reserves. When calibrated to the North Sea, as well as data from other basins, the analysis provides a conceptual framework for risking Barents Sea prospects & plays for trap/seal failure, phase, and preservation.


Bjørkum, P.A. & P. H. Nadeau, 1998, Temperature controlled porosity/permeability reduction, fluid migration, and petroleum exploration in sedimentary basins. Australian Pet. Prod. & Expl. Assoc. Journal, 38, 453-464.

Nadeau, P.H., 2011, Earth's energy "Golden Zone": A synthesis from mineralogical research. Clay Minerals, 46, 1-24.

Nadeau, P.H., Bjørkum, P.A. & Walderhaug, O., 2005. Petroleum system analysis: Impact of shale diagenesis on reservoir fluid pressure, hydrocarbon migration and biodegradation risks. In: Doré, A. G. & Vining, B. (eds) Petroleum Geology: North-West Europe and Global Perspectives – Proceedings of the 6th Petroleum Geology Conference, 1267-1274. Petroleum Geology Conferences Ltd., Published by the Geological Society, London.

Ltd., Published by the Geological Society, London. Figure 1. Structural geo-seismic section along the Western

Figure 1. Structural geo-seismic section along the Western Barents Sea Margin (J. K. Hansen, pers. com.)

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From Heidrun to the Outer Vøring Margin: Lessons learned in search of a westward extension to the prolific Halten Terrace Jurassic oil play Roy Leadholm, Tim Austin, Colin Hirning, Rune Mogensen, Chris Parry

Over the last three decades ConocoPhillips has established a legacy of knowledge in Mid Norway through its exploration endeavors and commitment to test multiple play concepts. This activity involved participation in 26 exploration licenses and the drilling of 34 wildcat wells in the Halten Terrace, the Vøring Basin and the Møre Basin (Figure 1).

Terrace, the Vøring Basin and the Møre Basin (Figure 1). The effort resulted in: 3 significant

The effort resulted in: 3 significant commercial discoveries (Tyrihans, Heidrun and Aasta Hansteen) representing a NPD estimated gross recoverable resource base of 360 MM SM 3 ; three technical discoveries with an estimated challenged in-place resources in excess of 550 MM SM 3 (Ellida, Midnattsol and Stetind); fourteen wells with significant shows and fourteen dry holes. Each of these wells played a significant role in advancing the geologic understanding of the Mid Norway region. This paper provides a look back on the exploration program with the intent of compiling the lessons learned into a meaningful geologic synopsis that will hopefully prompt discussion and benefit industry in future exploration efforts.

The Haltenbanken area was opened for initial (5 th Round) license applications in 1980. Midgård (later part of Åsgard unit) was discovered in 1981 but was viewed at the time as a disappointment (gas-condensate). Two years later ConocoPhillips was part of the consortium that made the first oil discovery in the area (Tyrihans). Encouraged by this result the company initiated extensive regional work in preparation for the 8 th Licensing Round. A key part of this program was a

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maturation modeling project designed to identify oil prone fetch areas. This work played a significant role in the PL095 award (ConocoPhillips initial operator). The first well in the license was positioned within the mature oil window but failed due to an expanded Melke Formation which pushed the main Jurassic reservoir deeper than prognosed. The second well, 6507/7-2, was positioned in an immature oil window but up-dip from a mature fetch cell. It resulted in the Heidrun discovery. Significant learnings in terms of porosity preservation and maturation- migration trends followed from this early work. The Heidrun discovery helped spur a continuation of successful exploration on the Halten Terrace that has carried through to recent times.

In the mid 1990's the authorities opened portions of the Vøring and Møre areas for the 15th Licensing Round. To prepare for the round, ConocoPhillips conducted an extensive seismic- stratigraphic and sequence stratigraphic regional project tying in well data from the Halten Terrace and West of Shetlands together with outcrop data from East Greenland. Focus at this time was on the large structural potential offered by the Ormen Lange, Vema and Nyk Domes. In the Vøring Basin, syn-rift Upper Cretaceous to Paleocene reservoir sands were postulated, sourced from the uplifted pre-drift East Greenland Shelf and mainland Norway. Paleocene sands were also predicted to be present in the Møre Basin structures. At the time of application it was thought the Ormen Lange structure would be gas prone due to deep burial of Jurassic source rocks. The Vema Dome and Nyk High were thought to have better potential for oil, but only if liquids were preserved by well timed migration episodes. ConocoPhillips was awarded interest in the Vema Dome (PL215) and later farmed into the Nyk Dome (PL217 & PL218). Subsequent drilling confirmed that reservoir predictions were largely correct. However, even though significant quantities of dry gas were found at Ormen Lange and Aasta Hansteen (Nyk), no direct evidence of a working Jurassic source was proven.

In the early 2000's, additional significant structural potential was made accessible via the 16th and 17th Licensing Rounds in both the Vøring and Møre Basins. Influenced by the Ormen Lange


exploration mandate was expanded to include the search for both large oil and large gas prospects. Interest in six exploration licenses was obtained during this phase (PL254, PL258, PL264, PL281 and PL283). PL258 targeted rotated Jurassic fault blocks on the south west flank of the Gjallar Ridge, with an assumed oil mature Jurassic source. PL264 was centered on the

Nagalfar Dome, directly north from the

Cretaceous sandstones would be present. Modeling studies predicted potential for a liquids

charge from mature Jurassic source rocks interpreted to underlay basaltic sheet flows to the west. PL254 and PL281 were acquired based on pursuit of giant gas prospects with Upper Cretaceous-

gas discoveries with associated direct hydrocarbon indicators, the company’s

direct hydrocarbon indicators, the company’s Luva Luva discovery, where play fairway mapping suggested Eocene

Luva discovery, where play fairway mapping suggested

Eocene basin floor sand reservoirs draped over large inversion features.

demonstrated amplitude conformance. In addition the PL281 prospect had a well developed flat event. PL283 was also acquired in search of giant gas with a main prospect that targeted a rotated Cretaceous fault block with a recognized AVO anomaly associated with the Lysing Formation.

All of these licenses except PL258 have been tested with wildcat wells. Significant challenged resources were found but despite the robust direct hydrocarbon indicators, no commercial discoveries were made. The principal failure was reservoir quality.

These prospects both

In preparation for the 19 th Round, ConocoPhillips embarked on a renewed regional work program. The primary objective was to evaluate and characterize the basin for liquids potential. These efforts led to the high grading of postulated Cretaceous and Jurassic oil prone opportunities along the Gjallar Ridge. On the southern flank of the ridge a prominent Cretaceous four-way dip- closed structure with an underlying large and robust tilted fault block, potentially of Jurassic age, was identified. It was hoped that this prospect, Dalsnuten, would contain oil sourced from Late

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Jurassic shales. The blocks were applied for and interest was secured with a firm well commitment. In preparation for the 21st License Round, the company conducted proprietary reprocessing ventures to position for analogous opportunities along the western margins of the Møre and Vøring Basins. An application for the Bach Prospect, situated at the north end of Gjallar Ridge was submitted. The Dalsnuten Prospect reached total drilling depth after the bid round was closed. Results demonstrated significant deviation from the pre-drill interpretation in that the structural development of the underlying fault block was younger than prognosed, the well failed to prove viable reservoirs and there were no significant shows. Given shared risks with the Dalsnuten prospect the application for the Bach Prospect was withdrawn.

Although several large gas discoveries have been made in the Vøring and Møre Basins, a westward extent of the prolific Jurassic source rock has not yet been proven. From a gas perspective, a large proportion of the wildcat tests outboard of the Halten Terrace failed, largely due to reservoir presence or quality. In recent years industry interest in wildcat exploration in this area has diminished. In the 22nd License Round, out of 86 blocks announced only 14 were in the Norwegian Sea. It is hoped that sharing lessons learned from previous drilling may spur discussions that could help revive exploration in the area. Moreover, it is duly noted that in addition to the structural and stratigraphic concepts that have been drilled, there is remaining untested potential beneath the poorly imaged sub-basalt province to the west, as well as within the currently un-opened acreage of the greater Nordland-Vesterålen area to the north. Combined industry learnings will help optimize exploration efficiency when pursuing opportunities in these as yet untested domains.

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Permian stratigraphy of the Southern Nordland Ridge, Haltenbanken: Results from recent exploration drilling

Chris Dart, Anne-Lise Lysholm, Lars Stemmerik* & Stefan Piasecki*

E.ON E&P Norge AS, Norway; *University of Copenhagen, Denmark


Following E.ON’s acquisition of a 28% stake in the Skarv development, the company placed a heightened focus on exploration on, and around, the Dønna Terrace. Years of Jurassic and Cretaceous exploration had all but exhausted the potential for finding significant discoveries in these classic plays. Therefore, a possibility to test the under-explored Permian carbonate play in a large structure within the southern Nordland Ridge offered a promising frontier exploration opportunity. Although the well was dry, valuable new information was collected, confirming that an analogous Permian carbonate stratigraphy to East Greenland is present on the Norwegian side of the North Atlantic. Unfortunately, however, the Permian carbonates of mid-Norway still remain one of the great unconfirmed plays of the NCS.

still remain one of the great unconfirmed plays of the NCS. E.ON acknowledges partners Statoil Petroleum

E.ON acknowledges partners Statoil Petroleum AS and PGNiG Norway AS for active contributions to the exploration effort, and permission to release information released in this presentation and abstract.

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Permian stratigraphy of East Greenland

Mapping campaigns from the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) and exploration efforts by ARCO in the 1980’s led to the publication of a series of key articles on the Permian geology of East Greenland in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s (Surlyk et al. 1986; Piasecki & Stemmerik 1991; Stemmerik et al.1993; Stemmerik et al., 1993).

Photo below

In East Greenland, the Permian sequence sits unconformably on Devonian/Carboniferous coarse clastics, and is overlain by the fine grained sediments of the Triassic Wordie Creek Fm. In Jameson Land, Permian karstified bryozoan carbonate build-ups of the Wegener Halvø Fm. provide potential reservoir rocks that are directly overlain by organic rich shales of the Ravnefjeld Fm. The build-ups are capped and flanked by ooidal and bioclastic packstones and grainstones, further enhancing reservoir potential. These formations overlie potential secondary reservoirs in the karstified brecciated carbonates of the Karstryggen Fm., and basal conglomerates of the Huledal Fm., completing the exposed East Greenland Permian stratigraphy.

completing the exposed East Greenland Permian stratigraphy. Biennial Geophysical Seminar 25 Biennial Geophysical Seminar

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Previous drilling results from Haltenbanken

On the Norwegian side of the Atlantic Permian carbonates were first proved in 1983 by the Phillips 6609/7-1 well that penetrated a 36 m remnant of Permian carbonates and sandstones sandwiched between the BCU and crystalline basement rocks. Interest in the mid-Norway Permian play was then heightened following IKU shallow drilling close to the Norwegian mainland in the 1990’s. Here a clastic sequence was penetrated spanning the Permian-Triassic boundary and including a potential source rock and hydrocarbon shows. The source rock was later correlated to the Ravnefjeld Fm. by Bugge et al.s (2002) article, that first synthesised the petroleum potential of the mid Norway Permian play.

the petroleum potential of the mid Norway Permian play. Recent exploration drilling results from the Nordland

Recent exploration drilling results from the Nordland Ridge

PL350 was awarded in APA2004 to a Statoil operated partnership, where E.ON held a minority share. Initial focus on Jurassic prospectivity failed to yield a drillable target, and attention shifted to a large, deep, fault block that occupied most of the southern part of block 6507/6. This structure was not new, and had already been identified by NPD’s Blystad et al.’s (1995) Bulletin No.8, on the structural elements of the Norwegian Sea as the Sør High. The deepest well on the block TD’ed several hundred meters above the reflector that defined the structure. Regional well tie work, however, indicated that this could potentially mark the top of the Permian carbonates.

Statoil organised a license field expedition in the summer of 2008 led by the University of Copenhagen to study the exposed Permian geology in East Greenland, and much useful information was gathered on likely reservoir parameters.

In 2009 E.ON took over operatorship of PL350, Statoil reduced their share and PGNiG joined the partnership, bringing with them their experience from exploring the Permian carbonate play in Poland. Following the EO09M02 PSDM reprocessing of the available 3D seismic data, a drill decision based on the Permian Sesam prospect was made, with the Triassic Grey Beds Sindbad prospect as a secondary target. PL350B was secured as protection acreage for the northernmost part of the prospect in APA2011.

6507/6-4 was spudded in October 2011, and completed in January 2012. After a long hard Triassic section, the well finally penetrated a complete succession of the Permian stratigraphy and TD’ed in (probable) Carboniferous conglomerates at 4360 m TVDSS. 27 m of core were recovered from the uppermost part of the carbonates. Litho- and biostratigrahic correlation show that all the Permian formations exposed in East Greenland are probably also represented in the 6507/6-4 well. The cored

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Wegner Halvø Fm equivalent was unfortunately developed in a fine grained off-reef distal turbidite facies, without reservoir potential.

distal turbidite facies, without reservoir potential. Data from the well are still being analysed, and work

Data from the well are still being analysed, and work continues to identify new ways of approaching the, as yet unproven, play. Hopefully this new data point is just a milestone on the journey, and not the conclusion of the mid-Norway Permian carbonate exploration story.


Blystad, P., Brekke, H., Færseth, R. B., Larsen, B. T., Skogseid, J., & Tørudbakken, B. 1995 Structural elements of the Norwegian Continental Shelf. Part II: The Norwegian Sea region. Norwegian Petroleum Directorate Bulletin 8.

Bugge, T., Ringås, J. E., Leith, D. A., Mangerud, G., Weiss, H. M. & Leith, T. L. 2002 Upper Permian as a new play model on the Mid-Norwegian continental shelf: investigated by shallow stratigraphic drilling:

American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin 86, 107-127.

Piasecki, S. & Stemmerik, L. 1991 Late Permian anoxia of central East Greenland. In: Modern and ancient

shelf anoxia, Tyson, R. V. & Pearson, T. H., Eds., Geological Society of London Special Publication 58, 275-


Stemmerik, L., Scolle, P. A., Henk., F.H., Di Liegro, G. & Ulmer, D. S. 1993 Sedimentology and diagenesis of the Upper Permian Wegener Halvø Formation carbonates along the margins of the Jameson Land Basin, East

Greenland. In: Arctic geology and petroleum potential, Vorren, T.O., Bergsager, E., Dahl-Stamnes, Ø. A., Holter, E., Johansen, B., Lie, E. & Lund, T. B., Eds., NPF Special Publication 2, Elsevier, Amsterdam, 107-


Surlyk, F., Hurst, J. M., Piasecki, S., Rolle, F., Scholle, P. A., Stemmerik, L. & Thomsen, E. 1986 The Permian of the western margin of the Greenland Sea a future exploration target. In M.T. Halbouty (ed.) Future petroleum provinces of the world. American Association of Petroleum Geologists Memoir 40, 629 659.

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How innovative thinking can lead to exploration success

Angus McCoss, Exploration Director, Tullow Oil plc

Angus McCoss was appointed to the Board of Tullow Oil plc in December 2006. Angus is a geologist with a BP sponsored PhD. Before joining Tullow, Angus had 21 years of wide-­‐ranging exploration experience, working primarily with Shell in Africa, Europe, China, South America and the Middle East. He held a number of senior positions within Shell including Americas Regional Vice President Exploration and General Manager of Exploration in Nigeria. He is also a non-­‐executive Director of Ikon Science Limited and a member of the Advisory Board of the industry-­‐backed Energy and Geoscience Institute of the University of Utah.

Tullow is Africa’s leading oil and gas company and one of the world’s leading exploration companies. Over the past 7 years, the company has made key basin-­‐opening discoveries offshore Ghana and in Uganda and Kenya. Tullow now works in 15 countries in Africa and has plans in 2013 to drill high-­‐ impact wells in Kenya, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Mauritania and Cote d’Ivoire. Alongside this African success, Tullow has taken its success offshore West Africa over to South America where, in September 2011, the company made the Zaedyus-­‐1 discovery, offshore French Guiana. This discovery has lead Tullow to investigate the Atlantic margins further and in 2012 Tullow made five new country entries of which four (Norway, Greenland, Guinea and Uruguay) have Atlantic prospects. This interest in the Atlantic Margins was increased in late 2012 when Tullow acquired Norway’s Spring Energy and was further increased by Spring’s success in the 2012 Norwegian APA Licence Round. In 2013, Tullow Norge (of which Spring is the key constituent) has interests in at least 10 wells, offshore Norway.

In his presentation to Norsk Petroleumsforening, Dr. McCoss will discuss Tullow’s geological and geophysical approach to exploration and he will demonstrate how Tullow’s new interests in Norway fit with the company’s global exploration strategy.

Tullow and Spring are highly complementary to each other. Both companies have a strong record of both discovering and commercialising oil resources and both companies have a strong entrepreneurial streak. Spring has now been integrated into Tullow and Spring’s CEO, Roar Tessum, has been appointed to lead Tullow’s North Atlantic Business Unit which includes acreage offshore Greenland that Tullow farmed-­‐in to last year.

Acquiring Spring has complemented Tullow’s expertise in geoscience. Of Spring’s 37 employees, 24 are geologists or geophysicists. Tullow’s abilities in these fields are well recognised and are at the heart of the Company’s major exploration successes since 2006. Tullow’s office in Dublin, where the company was founded, is a centre of geoscientific excellence with close links to University College, Dublin. Tullow’s exploration teams in London and Cape Town are equally capable and form a world-­‐ wide exploration effort that is industry-­‐leading. This position has been earned through the rigorous application of geoscience and petroleum engineering in analysing potential petroleum systems and sedimentary basins. The geoscientific expertise that Spring has brought to Tullow will not only be vital in evaluating new acreage awarded offshore Norway but in examining analogues throughout the Atlantic Margins.

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The Edvard Grieg-­‐Johan Sverdrup exploration history and future area potential

Hans Rønnevik, Arild Jørstad and Daniel Stoddart Lundin Norway AS

Sivert Jørgenvåg Statoil ASA

The first exploration drilling campaign in Norway in the late 60’s included the southern Viking Trough and the Utsira High. This campaign resulted in several significant gas and biodegraded oil discoveries related to Jurassic and Paleocene play types (Frigg and Balder fields). The first well on the southern part of the Utsira High, Esso 16/2-­‐1 drilled in 1967, had good oil shows in the Tor Formation and basement. This was later referred to as the Ragnarrock discovery and delineated by Statoil in 2007 with the drilling of wells 16/2-­‐3 and 4. The delineation drilling concluded that the chalk and basement reservoirs in this area had limited commercial potential.

The initial exploration phase of the area was based on 2D seismic data and the general view in the late 1980's was that the southern Viking Trough and Utsira High was an area of gas or heavy oil. This view hindered the possibility of alternate play types. However the introduction of 3D seismic as an exploration tool in the 1990's opened for more efficient seismic guided exploration that resulted in the discovery of light oil (ie. Jotun, Ringhorne). Further development of the 3D seismic into multi-­‐ cube 3D seismic and rock physics analysis integrated with an increase in the diversity of the geochemical and geological data triggered a new successful exploration effort from 2000. The early success was focused on the Paleocene oil discoveries leading to the Alvheim, Volund and Vilje discoveries.

The southern part of the Utsira High is a basement high that has a kinematic history different from the central and northern part and is hence referred to as Haugaland High. The high is affected by all the major tectonic events from Late Paleozoic to Late Neogene and Pleistocene glacial episodes. These events are all essential for the petroleum habitat of the high.

The prolific petroleum nature of the Haugaland High area was demonstrated by the following oil discoveries: Edvard Grieg (16/1-­‐8) in 2007, Draupne (16/1-­‐9) in 2008, Luno South (16/1-­‐12) in 2009, Apollo discoveries (16/1-­‐14) in 2010, the giant Johan Sverdrup discovery (16/2-­‐6) in 2010 and the Tellus discovery in 2011 (16/1-­‐15). These discoveries are flanking and are pressure sealed off from the saturated light oil/biodegraded black oil 16/2-­‐5 discovery at the crest of the high drilled in 2009. In addition the Verdandi gas discovery (16/1-­‐6S) was made in 2003.

The initial play concepts developed for the APA 2004 and 2005 license applications highlighted the presence of a 40-­‐50 m saturated oil leg in thin Jurassic age sand and inlier basin sediments with a common oil leg flanking the whole Haugaland High. The presence of Upper Jurassic sand play concept was supported by wells 16/1-­‐5 and 16/3-­‐2 which showed excellent reservoir properties. The saturated oil leg concept was based on the presence of good oil shows in well 16/1-­‐5 and gas in granite was in 16/1-­‐4 .

The concept of filling the whole high was supported by an updated macro-­‐scale migration model that combined late migration into the Haugaland High from source rock areas in the Viking Trough. This was backed by Tertiary paleo-­‐reconstruction of the high that indicated that the current outline of

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the high was obtained in Pliocene. Hydrocarbon indicators strongly suggested leakage from the west flank of the Karmsund Graben into the overlying Miocene Utsira Formation and a subsequent migration from east to west within this sequence.

Leads in stratigraphic traps in Paleocene and Upper Jurassic/Lower Cretaceous sequences along the western and south-­‐western flanks of the Haugaland High were considered possible. The Jurassic/Cretaceous play concept was enhanced by the Hanz and West Cable discoveries and 16/1-­‐3 well. The Paleocene play was based on the Verdandi and Biotitt discoveries and sand found in several wells on the west flank of the high.

The discovery of the Edvard Grieg Field (16/1-­‐8 drilled in 2007) proved the play concept related to filling of the whole high. The Edvard Grieg discovery calibrated the migration concept and importantly converted the Johan Sverdrup prospect in to a low risk prospect. Hence a firm well commitment was included in the APA 2009 application.

The Apollo prospect was drilled in 2010 by well 16/1-­‐14 on a multi-­‐target concept with the primary target being the Hugin sand on lapping the Ivar Åsen discovery and the secondary target being the younger Upper Jurassic/Lower Cretaceous and Paleocene. The Hugin sand was thinner than prognosis and found below the Ivar Åsen oil water contact. However, mildly biodegraded oil was found in Paleocene sands and high shrinkage oil in a small Lower Cretaceous accumulation.

The Edvard Grieg discovery could easily have been overlooked without extensive data acquisition; respectively coring, detailed fluid sampling and well testing. The mineralogical nature of the sand matrix and abundance of conglomeratic pebbles made it challenging to establish the petrophysical properties, fluid saturation and fluid contacts using electrical logs. Understanding the petrophysical properties of the reservoir has only been achieved by detailed analysis of the cores.

The oil leg in the discovery well 16/1-­‐8 was established by detailed fluid sampling in a zone where the UV light showed oil in the cores with little support from the ordinary E-­‐logs. The well was temporarily abandoned for testing at a later date.

The first Edvard Grieg appraisal well (16/1-­‐10) was tested by perforating and producing the upper sand. The well test revealed that the thin sand on the top communicated with a much better reservoir facies close to the appraisal well. The dynamic well test interpretation concluded that an approximately 50 m thick multi-­‐Darcy sand was required to provide the observed pressure support. At the same time, new OBC 3D seismic acquisition techniques and geophysical methods unfolded a better picture of the subsurface indicating a thicker reservoir west of the first appraisal well. Encouraged by the good well test the discovery well (16/1-­‐8) was re-­‐entered and tested. Again a strong pressure support was identified by the dynamic well test interpretation. The second appraisal well (16/1-­‐13) encountered excellent 45 m thick high permeable sandstone.

Following the Edvard Grieg discovery the Luno South well (16/1-­‐12) was drilled and instead of proving sediments oil bearing porous weathered basement was encountered. This discovery has a 10m shallower OWC compared to Edvard Grieg.

The well 16/1-­‐15 was drilled to prove a potential northern extension of the Edvard Grieg discovery. Oil was found in Valanginian age bioclastic calcareous sandstone resting directly on weathered basement. This discovery is in pressure communication with the main reservoir and is included as

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part of the Edvard Grieg Field. The porous basement and the bioclactic sandstone were successfully tested. This was the first time porous basement was tested on the NOCS.

The Edvard Grieg Field has 6 different facies types that are new to the Norwegian shelf.

The Edvard Grieg discovery upgraded the Johan Sverdrup structure on the east flank of the Haugaland High to a low risk prospect. The Johan Sverdrup discovery well 16/2-­‐6 was located in a position to maximise the stratigraphic information in the previously undrilled Karmsund Graben.

The Johan Sverdrup discovery well (16/2-­‐6) encountered an oil column of 17m. The cores showed five meters Draupne Formation shale and six meters Volgian age sand separated from the Vestland group by a base Volgian regional unconformity. The total Jurassic thickness was 29 m with an OWC contact at 1922 m MSL. Live oil was found vugs in caliche below the OWC at a depth of 1940 m MSL. The Volgian sand was tested and showed extremely good reservoir properties with lateral continuity proven by drill stem testing. The permeability was interpreted to 36000 mD resulting in a radius of investigation of 3000 to 6000 m. The test was essential in establishing that the recoverable resources proven by the first well was in the range of 100 -­‐ 400 million barrels of oil. The extremely good reservoir properties and excellent lateral continuity was confirmed by the first appraisal well 16/3-­‐4 that was drilled between the old down flank well 16/3-­‐2 and the discovery well. The permeability was interpreted to 35000 mD with similar investigation radii as well 16/2-­‐6. The extensive delineation program, including sidetracks and testing, have been essential for the rapid unfolding of the reservoir. The later delineation wells drilled in 2011 confirmed the optimistic predrill view of a giant oil discovery. Each new well drilled in 2012 and 2013 have given new knowledge and learning.

The oil water contact has been varying between 1922 and 1934 m MSL. This must be understood in the context of recent migration and remigration response to glacial induced isostatic uplift.

The Edvard Grieg discovery was covered by a 40 km 2 3D OBC in 2008. In 2009 a 1675 km 2 3D Geostreamer survey (the first on the NCS) was acquired over the Haugaland High. Following the Johan Sverdrup discovery 2600 km 2 Broadsize 3D was acquired in 2010 and 11 (the first commercial survey on the NCS). These broadband seismic surveys are improving the imaging of the whole sequence from sea bottom into basement.

The main new elements in the understanding of the petroleum habitat of the Haugaland High are:

•Efficient migration of light oil into the prospects the last 1.5 million years through multi-­‐Darcy Volgian age sand when the reservoirs where beneath a depth corresponding to a temperature of more than 80 0 C. Light under saturated oil flanking saturated oil and gas discovery due to Late Miocene pressure barriers •Late Miocene inversion and Pleistocene subsidence have significant influence on the current structuring and migration and re-­‐migration. Glacial induced istostasy has also affected the re-­‐ migration New reservoir targets have been established on the Haugaland High:

•Continental proximal reservoir rocks in the Edvard Grieg discovery.

•Porous producible basement rocks in the Luno South and Tellus discoveries.

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•Transgressive marine Volgian age sandstone with extremely good reservoir properties overlying marine and fluvial Upper Jurassic sediment in Johan Sverdrup discovery.

•Lower Cretaceous/Upper Jurassic shelf sandstone reservoirs along the west flank.

•Valanginian age calcareous porous sandstone in Tellus.

Porous Zechstein has been observed in 4 wells 16/2-­‐6, 16/2-­‐7, 16/2-­‐16 and 16/3-­‐5

These new concepts have opened up for an extensive exploration campaign in surrounding licenses on the southern Utsira High. The following prospects will be drilled in 2013:

The Luno II prospect on the south flank of the Haugaland High

The Jorvik prospect in between the 16/2-­‐5 and Edvard Grieg Field

The Torvestad prospect

The Kopervik Volgian pinchout play

The Biotitt 4 dip Jurassic prospect

The Cliffhanger prospect

Additional leads are being matured for drilling in the years to come.

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Unfolding the complex geology and outline of the giant Johan Sverdrup discovery through appraisal drilling and subsurface modelling

Øyvind M. Skjæveland, Ane Birgitte Nødtvedt and Tone Ferstad – Statoil ASA Arild Jørstad and Harald Selseng - Lundin Norway AS

The Johan Sverdrup discovery is situated on the east flank of the Utsira Basement High in the North Sea. The discovery is located in licenses PL265 and PL501. The partners in PL265 are Statoil ASA (op) 40%, Petoro 30%, Det norske oljeselskap ASA 20% and Lundin Norway AS 10%. The partners in PL501 are Lundin Norway AS (op) 40%, Statoil ASA 40% and Maersk Oil Norway 20%.

Following the results of Det Norske’s Draupne discovery (now Ivar Aasen), Lundin’s Luno discovery (Now Edvard Grieg) and Statoil’s Ragnarrock discovery, all drilled in 2007/2008 on the western rim of the Utsira High and on the high itself, several companies applied for the PL501 license in the 2008 APA round. The well 16/3-2 from 1976 had proven Jurassic sand to be present on the high, and the 2007/2008 discoveries greatly increased the likelihood of migration to the east of the high from the most likely hydrocarbon source in the Viking Graben to the west.

likely hydrocarbon source in the Viking Graben to the west. Figure 1: BCU map (near top

Figure 1: BCU map (near top reservoir) with wells drilled to date posted. Wells 16/2-­‐1 to 16/2-­‐5 and 16/3-­‐2 were drilled prior to the discovery, the other wells are drilled after July 2010. The main Utsira basement high area is shaded. The yellow line shows the position of the geoseismic section of figure 2.

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Figure 2: Seismic and geoseismic section through the 16/2-­‐6 and 16/2-­‐8 wells. A black peak

Figure 2: Seismic and geoseismic section through the 16/2-­‐6 and 16/2-­‐8 wells. A black peak represents an increase in acoustic impedance. The envelope of the Jurassic can be interpreted on the seismic and is marked by arrows. Location of line can be found in figure 1.

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The first well to be drilled to test this concept, and thus the discovery well of Johan Sverdrup, was the 16/2-6 well. Following the positive results here, which included a production test (DST) showing excellent reservoir properties and a laterally extensive upper Jurassic reservoir, this greatly increased the probability of finding oil in a more westward position, closer to the Utsira high itself.

The 16/2-6 well sits in a location where the Jurassic reservoir thickness is fairly thin (24 meters) and thus within one seismic cycle. The 16/2-8 well was drilled to test the Jurassic potential further to the west. It was placed in a position closer to the main boundary fault to the Utsira High - higher on structure and in an expected thick Jurassic package. The well found a 73 m thick Jurassic reservoir with a net-gross of 0.97, average porosity of 29% and multi-Darcy permeability. As the pressure data confirmed communication with the 16/2-6 well, it was now clear that what is now called the Johan Sverdrup field was a large discovery.

The reservoir in Johan Sverdrup consists mostly of late Jurassic-early Cretaceous coarse to very coarse sandstones (Draupne Fm.) which overlies fluvial to shallow marine Middle Jurassic sandstones that form the lower part of the reservoir section. The Draupne sandstone consists mostly of gravity flow deposits laid down along and at the front of fan-deltas directly fed from the basement high and reworked by marine currents. Marine reworking of the sediments has made the Draupne sandstone nearly mud-free, thus enhancing the reservoir properties which show porosities in the range of 0.24-0.32 and permeabilities from 1-30 Darcy. The fluvial to shallow marine Middle Jurassic reservoir (Vestland Gp.) has a more complex facies distribution. New appraisal wells have revealed varied reservoir properties – variations in NTG and sand distribution that are below seismic resolution. In Late Tithonian age the Karmsund Graben was rapidly drowned, causing formation of phosphatic-carbonate condensed section that preceded the deposition of deep water hot shales (Draupne Fm.) in the eastern part of the basin. At the same time, some fine spiculitic sandstones where deposited into the margins of the Utsira basement high, representing the younger portion of the reservoir.

An extensive appraisal drilling program has been carried out and is still ongoing in both the Statoil-operated PL265 license and in the Lundin-operated PL501 license. Special focus on data acquisition with extensive coring, wireline logging and dynamic data has been essential to obtain a better understanding of the reservoir and how to develop the field. The current plan for production start-up is 2018.

Including the 16/2-6 well with spud in July 2010, 14 wells have been drilled - with an additional 5 sidetracks, giving in average 50 days between each new data point. This pace will continue in 2013.

This presentation will aim at discussing some of the issues that are addressed with the appraisal wells and present some results to illustrate this.

One of the major uncertainties in the field relates to depth conversion. As the top of the reservoir is generally flat, and also since the reservoir envelope is rather thin in some areas, a few meters shift up or down can move the contact quite a long distance laterally, with implications both for volume and drainage strategy. The 16/5-2 S well serves as an example of this – the well came in dry as the overburden velocities were higher here than predicted by the models.

The contact itself is also uncertain. Most wells show an oil-water contact of around 1921-1925 m TVD MSL, but the 16/2-10 well proved a contact of 1934m. The recent 16/2-16 well (and sidetrack 16/2-16 A T2) was drilled with one of the objectives to define contact, and as the deep contact was found only in the sidetrack, this will help in constraining the area of the deep contact in this area.

The wells drilled so far have confirmed that we seem to have a reasonable good grip on the envelope of the Jurassic, and as all wells so far have proven a tight Triassic, this is also the envelope of the main reservoir. Even though the reservoir container is reasonably well understood, the variation of properties within the container is more difficult to get a grip on, as the seismic not has proven to be of very much help - as wells with a similar seismic expression have proven quite different reservoir facies.

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So far the wells have been placed in a secure distance away from the main fault that defines the western edge of the graben, to reduce the risk of encountering alluvial conglomerates. The planned 16/2-17 well (Q2 2013) will be drilled in a position close to the fault to investigate this area.

Even though the Triassic rock has proven tight, there could be reservoir potential in deeper strata, such as in fractured basement proven by the 16/3-4 and 16/2-12 wells, and also in Permian carbonates, which is a secondary target for the ongoing 16/3-5 well, drilled in a setting where the Triassic is absent.

The field extent to the south and east is controlled by the contact, but towards the north and the west, the extent is more controlled by the presence or absence of reservoir. The 16/2-9 S well was drilled in 2011 in a small graben north of the main Johan Sverdrup graben, and encountered spiculite – a rock made up of siliceous sponge spicules that dissolve and can create good secondary porosity but usually very poor permeability. The very modest reserves in this graben are not considered part of Johan Sverdrup.

Given the disappointing results of the 16/2-9 S well, the results of the 16/2-12 Geitungen well, drilled in 2012 on a basement terrace midway between the spiculites encountered in 16/2-9 S and the Johan Sverdrup field, was very welcome. This well was regarded as an exploration well with a risk on reservoir presence – but when the well came in with a good reservoir, and only a thin layer of fine spiculitic sandstone at the top, the well was reclassified as an appraisal well – as the pressure data indicated communication with Johan Sverdrup.

Following up the positive results from Geitungen, it is possible that even more resources may be added to the Johan Sverdrup volumes this year, both to the north and to the west. An exploration well will be drilled to test the Torvastad prospect, located to the north of the 16/2-9 S well. Also this year, a well will be drilled to the west of the main fault in the area west of the 16/2-14 well, to test if sands are present on the basement high itself. This prospect is called Cliffhanger North.

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The Butch Oil Discovery

Jessica Hill Centrica Energi, Norway

Introduction Licences PL405 and PL405B covering parts of blocks 8/10 and 7/12 are located along the Northern margin of the oil rich North Sea Central Graben. Centrica Resources Norge AS (Centrica Energi) drilled the exploration well 8/10-4S (as licence operator) on the Butch Main prospect which lies 8km southeast of the producing Ula Field, and approximately 15km north of the Gyda Field, (Figure 1). The licence partnership is comprised of Faroe Petroleum, Tullow Oil and Suncor Energy. The licence was awarded in the APA 2006 licencing round.

The licence was awarded in the APA 2006 licencing round. Figure 1: Butch Main location map

Figure 1: Butch Main location map

The exploration well 8/10-4S was drilled on a salt induced four way dip closure to evaluate the hydrocarbon bearing potential of the Upper Jurassic Ula sands sealed by the overlying Mandal shales. The expected hydrocarbon phase was light oil due to the close proximity to the nearby Ula field and the assumption that the structure may share the same source. Figure 2 gives an overview of the structure, well placement and proximity of the Butch prospect in relation to the Ula Field.

The main pre-drill risk was identified as reservoir presence/quality and seal breach.

Structural Setting The Butch Main structure was formed as a result of salt movement in the Late Cretaceous and Palaeocene. The salt movement in this area was largely post depositional and intruded into the overlying Late Jurassic sediments creating a four way dip closed structure around the diaper, which has then been further segmented by faulting related to the salt movement. The faulting appears to define three main segments, one of which is Butch Main, as shown in Figure 3.

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Figure 2: Geo-seismic cross section through the Butch area Figure 3: Map showing Butch Main

Figure 2: Geo-seismic cross section through the Butch area

Figure 2: Geo-seismic cross section through the Butch area Figure 3: Map showing Butch Main structure

Figure 3: Map showing Butch Main structure

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Block 8/10 is located between the Ula-Gyda Terrace and the Sørvestlandet High. The Butch discovery lies in the Central Trough within a Late Jurassic extensional basin, superimposed on the western flank of a pre-existing Permo-Triassic basin.

Stratigraphic Setting The overall trend of the Upper Jurassic Ula Formation is transgressive, passing from shoreface sandstones into the overlying shelfal siltstones and claystones of the Farsund Formation. However in detail both progradational and retrogradational cycles are present within the Formation in this area. Sand deposition in the area is terminated by a significant regional transgressive event, leading to deposition of hot shales such as Upper Farsund Formation and the Lower Mandal Formation which acts as both the source rock and seal for the structure, (Figure 4).

both the source rock and seal for the structure, (Figure 4). Figure 4: Stratigraphic chart across

Figure 4: Stratigraphic chart across zone of interest. Ula Formation sands present in Butch Main have been dated as Late Kimmeridgian from biostratigraphic data.

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Well Results Summary The 8/10-4S well was spudded on 15th August 2011 and after four sidetracks was permanently plugged and abandoned on 15th January 2012 as a light oil discovery. The well was drilled in shallow water depths of 44m and reached a total depth of 3071m MD RKB, 13m into Upper Permian Zechstein anhydrites.

Well 8/10-4S only encountered an ODT, a further two sidetracks were drilled to locate the water leg within the Butch Main segment. Two additional sidetracks were then attempted to evaluate the neighbouring Butch Southwest segment (Figure 3), however due to wellbore stability issues both sidetracks did not extend further than the Hordaland Formation.

An extensive data program was carried out across the Ula Formation reservoir in both the main wellbore and sidetracks within the Butch Main segment. Approximately 50m of net pay was encountered, and an oil water contact was confirmed using RDT pressure data. The reservoir quality observed from core was exceptional and on trend with that observed in the neighbouring Ula Field.

Post drill recoverable volumes are estimated to be in the range of 30-60 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Way Forward The Butch Main discovery is currently progressing through the Centrica Energi internal decision gate process. The Mærsk Giant has been secured to drill two exploration wells in the neighbouring Butch East and Butch Southwest segments towards the end of 2013.

Acknowledgements Centrica Energi would like to thank the PL405 Partners for their valued input to the licence.

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King Lear: Rewriting the play

P. A. Jones 1 , J. P. Wonham 2 , D. Sharp 1 , S. Nordfjord 1 , M. Ekroll 1 , J. E. Haugen 1 .

1 Statoil Petroleum ASA, 2 Total E&P Norge.


The King Lear prospect, located in block 2/4 in the Norwegian North Sea, was drilled in 2012 by Statoil on behalf of PL146 and PL333 (Statoil Petroleum ASA and Total E&P Norge). In July 2012, the partnership confirmed that the high- pressure high-temperature (HPHT) 2/4-21 exploration well and subsequent sidetrack appraisal had proven a gas condensate discovery with estimated recoverable volumes between 70 and 200 million barrels of oil equivalent. This discovery was made in turbidite sandstones of the Upper Jurassic Farsund Fm. Several wells have previously been drilled into the Farsund Fm. in the same licence, including the 2/4-14 well in 1988-89, during which a high pressure reservoir was encountered that ultimately led to an underground blow-out, requiring the drilling of a relief well (2/4-15) to restore well control. In this paper we present the key objectives and results of 4 exploration wells drilled into the Farsund Fm., and illustrate how these data led to the evolution of the play concept throughout the exploration history. The recent integration of pressure, fluid properties, flow rate, petrophysics, geological and geophysical data to further evaluate conceptual reservoir depositional models, which resulted in the drilling of the 2/4-21 & 2/4-21 A wells is also presented.

Introduction (or Geological setting / Play context)

The King Lear discovery is located in the Central Graben, approximately 20km north of the Ekofisk Field, and 300km southwest of Stavanger (Figure 1, left). The discovery lies in a northwest-southeast trending half-graben between the Hidra High / Steinbit Terrace to the northeast, and the Feda Graben to the southwest. The Farsund Fm. contains turbidite sandstone reservoirs regionally sourced from the time-equivalent shallow marine platform to the north, encased by the source rocks of the Haugesund, Farsund and Mandal fms, which also provide a seal to the reservoir (Figure 1, right).

also provide a seal to the reservoir (Figure 1, right). Figure 1: Left: Licence map of

Figure 1: Left: Licence map of PL146, PL333 and surrounding area, highlighting the extent of the King Lear gas condensate discovery, and locations of key wells. Right: Lithostratigraphic chart, illustrating a simplified play concept of Farsund Formation turbidite sandstone reservoirs.

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Exploration history: 1988 - 1994

The following section presents a brief overview of the drilling operations in PL146, with a focus on the geological information acquired, and input to evolution of play concepts and prospectivity of the Farsund Fm.

PL146 was awarded in 1988 to a partnership consisting of, at that time, operator Saga Petroleum ASA, and partners Den norske stats oljeselskap a.s., Elf Petroleum Norge AS, and Amerada Hess Norge AS.

2/4-14: In October 1988, well 2/4-14 was spudded on the ‘A prospect’ in the middle of the northwest-southeast trending structure described as a “structural/stratigraphic closure on a rotated fault block developed during the Upper Jurassic” (Final well report 2/4-13 & 14, 1990), see Figure 2 for the well location relative to current interpretations. The objective of the well was to evaluate the reservoir potential of the expected Upper Jurassic sandstones, and to TD 150m into the Triassic. In January 1989 the well encountered an Upper Jurassic sandstone reservoir at high pressure resulting in a kick (Saga Petroleum, 1991). A cement plug was set, with the intention of drilling a sidetrack to fulfill the well objectives. During preparations for sidetracking on 20th January 1989, the cement plug failed, and the well started flowing. The BOP was closed and the drill pipe cut.

During June 1989, 2/4-14 was re-entered with the intention of ‘killing’ the well. On re-connection, unexpectedly ‘low’ pressure readings were encountered in the wellbore – subsequent PLT (Production Logging Tool) and ‘noise’ logs indicated the reservoir fluid had breached the casing, and was likely charging shallower sandstone beds. This information combined with repeated shallow seismic data acquisition confirmed that an underground blow-out was in progress, which thankfully did not breach the seafloor, charging sandstone beds at 828-878m MSL.

Continued attempts to regain control of 2/4-14 and stop the flow into the subsurface using a ‘top-kill’ approach were unsuccessful. Instead the 2/4-15S relief well was used to intersect the open hole section of 2/4-14 and kill the well. The 2/4-14 well was killed by the relief well on 12th December 1989.

Upper Jurassic gas and condensate had been flowing into the mapped shallow sandstone unit for up to 326 days. During this period, several data sets were collected to aid in the killing of the well, including flow and temperature measurements, and fluid samples from the well head.

2/4-16: In May 1991, well 2/4-16 was spudded 925m to the southeast of 2/4-14, with the primary objective of evaluating the reservoir potential of the same Upper Jurassic reservoir sandstones indicated by the 2/4-14 well (Saga Petroleum, 1992). The well penetrated 58m of Farsund Fm., but failed to encounter any reservoir sandstones. The absence of Farsund Fm. reservoir sands in the well necessitated a re-evaluation of the seismic data and geological models.

These results indicated the Farsund reservoir sandstone tagged by 2/4-14 is pinched-out, or eroded in between the two wells. It was thus concluded that the main zone of interest had to be in a more proximal setting in relation to the two wells, down-dip towards the north.

2/4-18 R: Well 2/4-18 R was spudded in February 1994 with the primary objective to test the reservoir potential of the ‘Upper Jurassic Wedge’. The well drilled 538m of Farsund Fm. in total. Thin, sandstone ‘stringers’ were encountered in what was later defined as the ‘Farsund 2 unit’, and two cores were taken, however neither recovered any reservoir section. Pressure measurements were attempted, largely without success as the sand stringers were mainly thin or cemented. Successful pressure points were however taken from the 2 thickest sandstones (3 and 5m thick respectively), with later fluid sampling attempts being unsuccessful. Insufficient pressure points were available to analyse the fluid density.

Post-well petrophysical analysis concluded the Farsund 2 sandstone unit (gross 27m, net 8.2m, ‘main sand’ 5m net) to be hydrocarbon bearing (average hydrocarbon saturation 52%), with 17% porosity at a depth of 5095-5122m MSL. The deeper 5m thick sand encountered in the Farsund 1 unit was water bearing, in a higher pressure regime than the Farsund 2 sandstone (Saga Petroleum, 1994). The 2/4-18R well was completed without well control problems, and was permanently plugged and abandoned as a well with strong shows (NPD fact pages).

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Data evaluation and integration Figure 2: South-northeast oriented sketch geo-seismic depth-section (based on 2011 seismic

Data evaluation and integration

Figure 2: South-northeast

oriented sketch geo-seismic depth-section (based on

2011 seismic data and

interpretations), illustrating

the location of Farsund Fm. well penetrations in PL146. Inset map shows the cross

section location (blue line) and well positions on a

2010 Top Farsund 2

sandstone depth map.

Following the initially disappointing 2/4-18 R well results, re-evaluation of all prospective plays in the licence was undertaken, and included the award of PL333 in 2004. Alongside evaluation of Permian, Triassic, Lower and Middle Jurassic and Cretaceous plays, the Farsund Fm. was further evaluated. Given the history of the Farsund Fm. in PL146/333, this involved integrating a wide range of datasets requiring a multidisciplinary approach – incorporating the expertise of drilling engineers, reservoir engineers, petroleum engineers, well flow/test specialists, high resolution/shallow seismic specialists, petrophysicists, geochemists, and geologists and geophysicists.

The re-evaluation of three key datasets/concepts was fundamental to an improved understanding of the Farsund Fm. play:




reinvestigation of the petrophysics and gas readings of the 2/4-18R well led to a revision of calculated gas saturations

up to 80%, however in a thinner net pay of 3m in the Farsund 2 unit sandstone. In addition, the gas saturation was observed to be shut-off abruptly at the base of the sand, implying a gas-down-to (GDT) situation.


Material balance:

Pressure observations and measurements from the 2/4-14 & 15S wells indicated that there was pressure depletion in the Farsund sandstone reservoir in response to the underground blow out. The 2/4-18 R well, drilled some 4 years after the

2/4-14 well was killed, also indicated a pressure depletion. This observation implied that the 2/4-14 & 18 R wells could

be in pressure communication on a production timescale.

By combining these observations with fluid composition data (2/4-14 and analogues), known ‘production’ rates from PLT logs, and duration of the flow, it was possible to evaluate the system in terms of ‘Material Balance’. By solving the equation for an ideal gas (given some key assumptions and data from the two wells), it was possible to ascertain the volume of hydrocarbons initially in-place, and thus estimate the present day ‘prospect’ volume.

As the data input to this method were not acquired under controlled conditions (pressure, fluid properties and flow rates), there was, inevitably a wide spread of uncertainty on the volumes calculated. Despite this uncertainty the resulting

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predicted volumes were considered significant and interesting enough to further mature the prospect towards a drillable candidate.


Depositional model:

It should be noted that a material balance approach implies nothing about the location of the container or tank within which the volumes are reservoired.

Given the relatively thin net sand in the Farsund 2 unit penetrated by 2/4-18R (5m), and unknown thickness in 2/4-14, in order to contain the volumes calculated from the material balance, the net pay thickness over the structure would need to be significantly thicker than previously penetrated by the wells.

Coupled with new seismic data and detailed interpretations of the internal stratigraphy of the Farsund Formation, a model of a potential depocenter with the deepest parts of the half-graben was proposed. This was built on the same belief before the 2/4-18R well that the reservoir most likely lies in a more proximal setting than the 2/4-14 & 16 wells. This model accounted for an increase in accommodation space, the palaeotopography of the depositional surface, and proximity to sand source locations.

2/4-21 King Lear discovery well

By combining the three fundamental concepts referred to above, it was possible to produce an internally consistent prospect evaluation that tied together all of the data available to mitigate the wide uncertainties present in several of the analyses. It is this approach that led to the 2/4-21 drill decision. The main objectives of the 2/4-21 well were to prove a well-developed hydrocarbon bearing reservoir, with pressure data confirming the communication between 2/4-14, 18R &


In 2/4-21, good quality permeable hydrocarbon bearing sandstone was proven on depth and within thickness prognosis at a depth of over 5000m. Extensive wireline, pressure, core data and fluid samples were acquired. Sidetrack 2/4-21 A was drilled down-flank approximately 500m to the northwest of the main well to evaluate the variability in reservoir development and quality and pressure communication, and confirm the deeper extension of the hydrocarbon column. All of these objectives were met.


Prospect models based on different types of data input: (1) depositional concept; (2) petrophysical analysis and observations, and (3) material balance model, generated a wide range of prospect analyses. Successful integration of these different approaches has added to the overall confidence of the resultant prospect volumetrics.

The results of the 2/4-21 & A wells confirmed the model used in the pre-drill evaluations. Good quality reservoir sandstone, of the prognosed thickness was proven, and in pressure communication with the Farsund 2 sandstones in the 2/4-14 and 2/4-18R wells. These results were achieved without any significant HSE incidents and on schedule in a HPHT area with a history of well control problems. This is testament to the strong focus on good procedures and solid knowledge in the planning and operation of the well from Statoil, drilling contractors and partners.


The authors acknowledge the PL146 & PL333 partnership (Statoil Petroleum ASA and Total E&P Norge) for permission to present this paper. The authors also wish to thank the numerous colleagues, partners, and contractors for their dedicated work during the 25 years of exploration history briefly summarised in this paper.


2/4-14 Experience Transfer Seminar, Saga Petroleum, 1991. Final well reports 2/4-13 & 14, 16, 18R, Saga Petroleum, 1990-1994. NPD fact pages

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Hunting for deepwater subtle traps: from geology to technology

Colin J Grant, Francesco Menapace, Uisdean Nicholson, Dominic McCormick, Ciaran O’Byrne, Gabriel Guerra & Jim Pickens


Post-rift, deepwater stratigraphic traps, the main theme of this presentation, have proven highly material where they have a large connected reservoir pore volume and are associated with a rich, active petroleum system. Significant discoveries of this type include the Marlim, Roncador, Albacora, and Mexilhao fields from offshore Brazil, the Foinhaven and Schiehallion fields from the West Shetland Basin, and Ceiba, Jubilee, Tweneboa and Enyenra from offshore West Africa. Similar subtle traps are also a common success theme in syn- and post-rift stratigraphy of intracratonic rift basins such as the North Sea and likely occur in other underexplored rift, sag and post-rift basins globally. In other areas, however, successful traps have proven to be less than commercial in size. In this contribution, we will look at the trapping styles that are commonly encountered, the seismic technology used to help identify these, the statistics behind these discoveries, and from these identify some of the pitfalls awaiting those eager to join the hunt but for whom geology or serendipity do not favour.

Deepwater Subtle Traps

Two fundamental subtle trap types that recur in deepwater fields with a stratigraphic trapping component are pinch-out or “wedge” traps and erosional truncation traps. The former occur when deepwater sandstones on-lap onto a paleo-slope, while the latter rely upon local or regional unconformities to create sealing geometries. Between these end-member groups occur stratigraphic-structural combination traps that represent the bulk of producing traps. Table 1 shows a synthesis of selected trap types determined from published literature and in-house evaluation. Graphic examples of some of those listed will be shown in the presentation.

Table 1: A selection of DW turbidite traps with a stratigraphic trap component

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Hunting for subtle traps: Role of Modern Technology Today, high fidelity marine 3D seismic imaging

Hunting for subtle traps: Role of Modern Technology

Today, high fidelity marine 3D seismic imaging and advances in computing technology have made the identification of subtle stratigraphic traps using horizon and interval attribute mapping a standardized interpretation workflow. Multiple technologies exist for rapid screening of multi-attribute volumes to discriminate reservoir fairways, trapping elements and reservoir fluids. With older (pre-Cenozoic) plays or at depths that are below the conventional AvO floor, rock properties can make fluid prediction difficult or impossible even if there is good rock- property calibration available. Shell has developed its own proprietary software for rapid volume screening that provides a fast and efficient way of searching for reservoir fairways. We also have 2D based technologies that can quickly identify stratigraphic pinch-outs. Other technologies that are used routinely to enhance trap understanding are contour or opacity stacking, seismic inversion methods such as elastic impedance inversion, and other quantitative interpretation products aimed at differentiating fluids and reservoirs. However, if the seismic data is band- limited, noisy or both, painstaking loop-level mapping is often needed to augment or replace these more sophisticated methods.

Despite the recent advances in interpretative technology, it is important to remember that the foundations of exploration success in deepwater plays are often laid down at the acreage selection stage. Success begins with selection of the right basin, the right play and the right acreage with the right level of commitment. It involves prudent multi-disciplinary basin evaluation. Often potential fields, 2D seismic, surface geology and play analogue data are only of evaluation. Many of the successes mentioned in this article were made based on solid regional geological foundations that did not rely upon interpretation technology, per se.

The Gold Rush

Since the discovery of the giant Jubilee field by Kosmos Energy in 2007 in Turonian-age deepwater turbidite reservoirs offshore Ghana, the increased pace of exploration along the West African continental margin can be compared to a gold rush. A similar phenomenon has recently propagated around the eastern seaboard of Africa in light of recent spectacular successes offshore Mozambique and Tanzania, albeit chasing a Paleogene deepwater gas play. This

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appetite for deepwater acreage has had an impact on the dynamics of the exploration industry. There are now many more and smaller players operating within this arena than five years ago and, as a result, there is little prospective open acreage remaining. But as with all gold rushes, there will be those who chose wisely and find success, by their own measure, and there will be those who won’t.

Many of the new entrants that have rushed into the African deepwater scene are small to mid- cap companies that are likely to be under-capitalized for the commitments they have taken on. Deepwater exploration wells now routinely cost between US$60 – 150 MM each. There have also been marked increases in surety-bond liability insurance for deepwater operations following the Macondo incident. A direct consequence of this high-cost environment is that as PSC’s mature and drilling deadlines approach, equity divestment becomes a necessity. Ioffshore Africa, deal flow is going though an up cycle that is a direct consequence of the high cost of deepwater exploration and the difficulty in securing venture capital for drilling operationally and technically difficult wells. Deal flow opens the back door to more conservative corporations that have an appetite for relatively low-risk deepwater exploration. However, substantial financial risks await those who rush into complex deepwater plays without a good understanding of the technical challenges, especially with promotes on equity running as high as three-for-one in some deals.

So all of this begs the question, is the West African Cretaceous deepwater turbidite play currently being hyped by an industry desperate for venture capital, or do the plays warrant continued high exploration expenditure in the light of recent exploration success? Below, we will finish this paper with a look at statistics from exploration drilling, field size estimates and published reservoir data to a plausible answer to this question.

All that is Gold does not Glitter

The graph in Figure 1 shows a creaming curve compiled for the West African Upper Cretaceous deepwater turbidite play. Of the 62 exploration tests in the population sampled, there have been 47 exploration discoveries (an astounding 76% technical success rate). A success rate such as this is as much testament to fine exploration acumen as it is to the trapping potential of deepwater depositional systems. From these there are estimated to be around 17 fields that have been, are being or have potential to be commercialized under existing fiscal and cost environments (a 27% commercial success rate). High technical and modest commercial success spells good news for some as it makes the marketing of undrilled opportunities much easier. It also makes for an easier sell to management when contemplating a farm-in. But creaming curve and success statistics can often be misleading. Discovery sizes and reservoir statistics add much more to the discussion.

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Figure 1: West African Upper Cretaceous Deepwater Creaming Curve (data sourced from Wood Mackenzie, data

Figure 1: West African Upper Cretaceous Deepwater Creaming Curve (data sourced from Wood Mackenzie, data and other open sources).

A field-size distribution chart created from a global dataset comprising deepwater reservoir

traps that have a stratigraphic trapping component is shown in Figure . Also shown in this chart


a separation of fields based on reservoir classification. Slope-channel/valley discoveries differ


size by almost an order of magnitude from discoveries interpreted as confined/unconfined

apron reservoirs.

The post-rift, West African Upper Cretaceous turbidite play of the transform margin basins comprises sandstones deposited mostly within a slope-channel valley setting. These somewhat inferior quality reservoirs contrast sharply with the quartz-rich, higher-net-to-gross confined and/or unconfined toe-of-slope apron systems that are more common in the Paleogene of offshore Brazil, West-of-Shetland, Mozambique and in the North Sea. Finding modest oil volumes in poorer quality, often thin channelized reservoirs in tough PSC contract environments and in deepwater does not make commerciality easy. These observations might explain a widening gap through time between the technical and commercial success rates across West African basins as well as the increased pace of deal flow in PSC’s in which discoveries have been made.

Over the next couple of years the rapid pace of exploration drilling will eventually uncover whether or not the spectacular successes and high resource densities found within the Tano basin, West Africa and more recently from the Sergipe-Alagoas Basin offshore Brazil, can be repeated elsewhere along the transform and rift margins on both sides of the Atlantic Basin.

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Figure 2 Global field-size distributions compiled from deepwater turbidite discoveries with a stratigraphic trapping

Figure 2 Global field-size distributions compiled from deepwater turbidite discoveries with a stratigraphic trapping component. The mean field size from the global distribution is 450 MMBOE. The global distribution is separated into two parts based on reservoir depositional setting: channel/valley and confined/unconfined apron. There is an order of magnitude difference in mean field size between these, posting mean field sizes of 100 and 930 MMBOE, respectively.

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The Mamba Complex supergiant gas discovery: an example of turbidite fans modified by deepwater tractive bottom currents.

Franco Fonnesu 1 Marco Orsi 1

1 Eni E&P, Via Emilia 1, 20097 San Donato Milanese (MI), Italy

The huge gas discoveries recently made in Mozambique deep water in both Area 1 (operated by Anadarko) and Area 4 (operated by Eni, with partners ENH, Galp and Kogas) have clearly shown that the Palaeogene turbidite succession represents the main exploration target in both areas. In Area 4 these gas-bearing reservoirs have been indicated with the general term of “Mamba Complex”. Within the Mamba Complex each sandstone reservoir package, that can attain thicknesses on the order

of some hundreds of metres, is interpreted to represent a basin floor fan accumulation

( sensu Posamentier and Walker 2006) deposited by sand-rich gravity flows during

lowstands via slope channels and/or canyons originally connected with a shelf area

thought to be located several tens of km westward of Area 4.

With the Miocene, due to the gravitative sliding of the slope, these sediment transfer conduits and part of the terminal fans were progressively incorporated within the advancing deformation front of the east-verging toe thrust system. The most advanced thrust front runs close to the boundary between Area 1 and Area 4. The Area 4, apart from a gently eastward structural dipping and some NW-SE normal faults, can be considered as fundamentally undeformed. This relatively simple structural situation has allowed to reconstruct in detail the external geometry of the fans enlightening that most of the Oligocene and Eocene systems appear to be characterized by seismic geometry and lateral facies changes that are unusual in “normal” gravity-flow dominated systems: i.e.(1) a marked channel asymmetry with constant southward shifting of sand depocenters (2)Fan tops constantly showing a lateral passage from sand to shale responses along gently southward dipping seismic reflections, (3) local presence of fan-detached sediment waves.

According to the writer’s previous experience in Atlantic-type deep-water passive margins (i.e Angola, Nigeria, Gabon), the Mamba Complex reservoir units are “anomalous” either in terms of thickness or sand content with respect to the turbidite systems usually found in these settings. The difference is that the Mamba fans appear extremely sand-rich, coarse-grained and developed with thicknesses that never have been directly observed (or described in the literature). In other words, with very few exceptions, the thick-bedded coarse-grained turbidites that constitute the bulk of the fan units (Facies F5 sensu Mutti, 1992) are noticeable for the lack of vertically associated fine-grained facies deposited by the dilute and turbulent part of turbidity currents (Facies F8 and F9). Where preserved and cored, the finer-grained facies show strong evidence of transport and deposition affected by the interaction of turbidite turbulent flow and bottom-current motion: i.e (i) repeated vertical passages, within the same bed, between parallel lamination and ripples indicating velocity pulsations; (ii) presence of mud-drapes within the small-scale cross-laminae; (iii) bi- directionality of the cross-laminae within the same bed; (iiii) shale clasts embedded within fine-grained sand layers. These “anomalous” structures, combined with the seismic geometries above described, support the idea of a possible winnowing and redistribution of the finer materials operated by the action of northward flowing sin- depositional bottom currents capable to deflect and incorporate within the adjacent sediment drifts the fine-grained sediments delivered by the gravity flows.

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Successful exploration in mature areas; - recipe from Revus and Agora stories Svein Ilebekk, Cairn Energy UK/Norway

Revus Energy AS was established in late December 2002, financially supported by HiTec and 3i with a total committed capital of 50 mills USD. The business model was to organically build an exploration portfolio and to acquire production for tax purposes. The company was listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange in 2005 and was later taken over by Wintershall in December 2008. At the start in 2002/2003 the activity on NCS was low, less than 20 E & P companies were active and only 15-20 exploration and appraisal wells were drilled each year. The oil price was 20 USD when we started the company.

Agora was formed late 2009, in the middle of the financial crises. As the framework conditions had changed since we formed Revus and activity level was relative high, the business model for Agora included exploration drilling on both the UK and Norwegian continental shelves. The financial support, 200 mills USD, was provided by RIT Capital Partners plc and Lord Rothschild’s family interests. After initial successful exploration results Agora was taken over by Cairn Energy early 2012.

During the 10 years of activity in Revus and Agora the companies acquired a number of licences in which there have been a number of discoveries made before and/or after we were taken over by Wintershall and Cairn. In total the two companies have been involved in more than 20 discoveries on the UK and Norwegian continental shelves. The first of these to be put on stream, Knarr (PL373, BG operator), will start production in 2015. The aggregated forward modeled gross and net productions profiles from the major discoveries indicate 200000-250000 boepd and 60000-80000 boepd respectively in the period 2016-2024.

How to make such an exploration success? It’s a team effort, involving Revus/Agora teams as well as licence partners and stimulated by the UK and Norwegian authorities. The key success factors are:

Fit for purpose business plan adjusted to existing framework conditions

The very best exploration team

Sufficient financing to support forward plan (3-5 years)

Good interaction between Board, Management and Employees

Incentives to all staff, openness, ownership and dedication

Monitor and measure predicted performance against actual outcomes

Today the exploration activity level on NCS and UKCS are at peak; - strong competition for quality acreage, lack of technical resources, cost increase and rig market vacuum for available slots. Is it possible to duplicate the Revus/Agora story? Yes, it is possible, but will require the very best technical team available in the market, a focused business plan and sufficient funding (300-500 mills USD) and a bit of luck.

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Revived exploration on the flanks of Troll Vegard Gunleiksrud, Tor Veggeland, Richard Olstad, Per Bakøy, André Janke, Kristian Angard, Harald Aubert, Per Avseth and Reidar Müller Tullow Oil Norge AS, Tordenskiolds gt 6B, 0160 Oslo, Norway

The giant Troll oil and gas Field (Fig. 1) was successfully discovered and appraised by Shell and Norsk Hydro in the late 70’s and early 80’s. On the northern flanks of Troll, the Fram Field structures were discovered by Mobil and Norsk Hydro during a second successful exploration phase in the 90’s. During the last 30 years eight dry wells have been drilled on the western and eastern flanks of Troll.

A general perception (e.g. Goldsmith 2000, Horstad et al 1997) is that more hydrocarbons than what yet is discovered may have migrated into and through the Troll Field. As we understand, there is no established model for spill or leakage out of Troll. Four wells East of Troll targeted the spill route out of Troll, but the structures were proven dry.

Tullow Oil Norge, as operator of the partnerships PL 550 and 551, has identified several prospects both on the migration route into the Troll Field and on the migration route out of the field. The model for the significant Kuro prospect implies a new explanation of the controlling mechanisms of the Troll Field hydrocarbon contacts. Tullow Oil will operate one well in 2013 (PL551) and one well in 2014 (PL550) in order to test some of the identified prospectivity.

As the flanks of the Troll Field had been thoroughly explored through several exploration phases during three decades, we tried to use some alternative approaches in order to define prospectivity. Our highest ranked prospects on the flanks of Troll are to a large degree resulting from the following “not-so-traditional” elements:

Ultra Far Offset seismic data – valuable info from data formerly regarded as “garbage”

Injectite sandstone reservoirs – not a traditional play in this area

Alternative source basin – giving “life” to well known structures formerly regarded too risky

to well known structures formerly regarded too risky Fig 1. BCU twt map with fields and

Fig 1. BCU twt map with fields and discoveries (incl. elements from PGS Mega Merge grid)

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The PL551 Mantra prospect will be drilled in 2013. Mantra is a 147 mboe oil prospect supported by a depth consistent seismic anomaly in a rotated Jurassic fault block (Fig.2). The main reservoir is in the late Jurassic Sognefjord Fm, proven as excellent in the Troll Field. The main challenge with the Mantra prospect is source and migration, assuming a main model for sourcing from the marginally mature Heather Fm. at the Uer Terrace. Alternative models include migration from mature Draupne and Heather Fms. in (1) the Sogn Graben via the Skarfjell oil discovery and (2) the Lomre Terrace.

via the Skarfjell oil discovery and (2) the Lomre Terrace. Fig. 2. Cross section through licenses

Fig. 2. Cross section through licenses PL550 and PL551 demonstrating the relationship between the northern tip of the Troll Field and the identified prospects and leads.

The 2013 Mantra well will also test the significant Kuro prospect in a down-flank position. Kuro is a 118 GSm3 Paleocene gas prospect. Seismic and well observations on the eastern flanks of Troll indicate that Paleocene Ty Fm. sandstones are in direct communication with the Sognefjord Fm. Troll gas pay. The Ty Fm. sandstones are interpreted to be the source (“parent”) of a large scale Paleocene injectite sandstone complex (Fig. 3). Extrapolated Troll gas pressure gradient intersects the regional minimum fracture gradient at depth of the Kuro prospect apex. The apex of the Kuro prospect may act as a pressure valve for the entire Troll Field, and could hold a gas column of 550m in dynamic equilibrium. This hydrodynamic trap/valve model is supported by pockmarks and significant shallow gas observations in the overburden above the Kuro apex.

In the late Jurassic syn-rift succession several stratigraphic trap prospects are identified. Ultra Far offset seismic data have been key in identifying these prospects. The PL550 Gotama prospect is defined by an ultra far offset seismic anomaly very similar to anomalies matching the Fram and Troll Field outlines. The main reservoir of the Gotama prospect is intra Draupne Fm. sandstone, believed to be re-deposited Sognefjord Fm. sandstones eroded off a paleo “Troll high”.

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Tullow Oil Norge holds 5 licenses around the Troll Field, and we believe there is still a substantial potential for discoveries on the flanks of Troll. Drilling activity the next few years will prove whether the prospect models are right or wrong. To be continued . (Exploration Revived 2015?)

or wrong. To be continued … . (Exploration Revived 2015?) Fig 3. The Kuro prospect: Paleocene

Fig 3. The Kuro prospect: Paleocene sand injectite complex in direct communication with the gas pay of the Troll Field. Extrapolated Troll gas pressure gradient intersects the regional minimum fracture gradient at depth of the Kuro apex (1000 mSS). The apex of the Kuro prospect may act as a pressure valve for the entire Troll Field, and could hold a gas column of 550m in dynamic equilibrium. This hydrodynamic trap/valve model is supported by shallow gas and pockmark observations in overburden above the Kuro Apex.

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The 35/9-6S Titan Discovery

Torodd Nordlie, Egil Lind and Kristine Rossavik RWE Dea Norge AS

The Titan discovery was made by the 35/9-6S well drilled in November/December 2010 in PL420 in the Northern North Sea approximately 16 km west of the Gjøa Field. PL420 was awarded in APA 2006 and the license is operated by RWE Dea with 30% equity. Partners are Statoil with 40% and Idemitsu with 30%.

The Ryggsteinen Ridge has been underexplored for many years due to poor seismic imaging (complex overburden) and overlooked positive signs from two old wells regarded as disappointing at the time of drilling (35/11-1 and 35/8-5S). The recent exploration success on Grosbeak, Titan and Skarfjell has changed this picture, and opened up for follow up potential on the Ryggsteinen Ridge and a high exploration activity level.

The primary exploration target for the Titan well was to prove petroleum in Middle Jurassic reservoir rocks (the Brent Group). The secondary exploration target was to prove petroleum in Upper Jurassic reservoir rocks (the Heather Formation) and in the Lower Jurassic reservoir rocks (the Cook Formation).

Oil and gas was proven in the Titan well over a gross column of more than 400 meters at five reservoir levels in the Heather Formation, the Brent Group, the Drake Formation and the Cook Formation. The well was drilled to a vertical depth of 3664 meters and was terminated in Upper Triassic rocks. Several faults were penetrated in the well and have created some uncertainty to the true thickness of the Callovian and Cook reservoir units.

The reservoir levels in the Titan well are in different pressure regimes, and no hydrocarbon- water contacts were encountered. Oil was discovered in the two upper reservoir zones and gas/condensate in the three lower reservoir zones. The PVT modeling suggests that the zones containing gas/condensate will contain oil deeper on the structure. The oil and condensate samples from the five reservoir zones also have comparable geochemical characteristics, so the only difference is the amount of methane.

The Titan well was drilled on a structural closure, and further to the south faults with possible sealing potential are mapped. Since no oil-water contact was penetrated in the well it is uncertain if the discovery is just the four-way structure or if Titan could be a hanging-wall fault trap with a larger areal extension. Due to these uncertainties appraisal drilling is needed to ascertain the volumes of the Titan discovery. The current P50 Titan recoverable resource estimate is 12 million Sm 3 of oil equivalents.

A 3D seismic survey (RD1201) was acquired by RWE Dea in the spring 2012. The survey was originally planned for the spring 2011, just after the discovery well, but was one year delayed due to fishery restrictions. As a result of the Skarfjell discovery in PL418 the RD1201 survey was extended into PL418 and PL378. The new 3D seismic data will be used to position the

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Titan appraisal well planned to be drilled late 2013 and to map further exploration potential in the PL420 license.

to map further exploration potential in the PL420 license. Biennial Geophysical Seminar 56 Biennial Geophysical Seminar

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Extended abstract:

The 35/9-­‐7, Skarfjell Discovery, The Skarfjell Discovery:

Jens-­‐Ole Koch, Sabine Rössle, Geert Strik, Bernhard Frey, Marius Brundiers & Rolf Magne Pettersen, Wintershall Norge AS

The Skarfjell discovery was made by the 35/9-­‐7 well drilled in March to April of 2012 in PL418 in the Northern North Sea, 17kms southwest of the Gjøa Field. The well found two intra Heather sandstone sections with light oil and good reservoir quality. The discovery is situated on the Ryggsteinen Ridge between the Titan (35/9-­‐6S) and Grosbeak (35/12-­‐2) discoveries.

A stratigraphic trap is formed by up-­‐dip truncation of the intra Heather sands by an intra Volgian/Base

Draupne unconformity towards the SE and a slope dipping towards the NE. The vertical height from the mapped crest of the structure around 2400m to the mapped potential spill-­‐point is approximately 600m. The majority of the trap is situated in PL418 but extends in to the PL378 towards the South. In the largest scenarioes the trap may extend into the PL420. The area is covered by an old 3D seismic survey of relative poor quality and a recent survey acquired in 2012.

The two intra Heather sands consist of high density gravity flow deposits and slope channel sandstones deposited in an offshore marine environment. The upper reservoir section is of Middle Oxfordian age whereas the lower section is likely to be Bathonian. The gross and net reservoir thickness is 69/49m for the upper sand and 14/6m for the lower sand. The sands are deposited immediately northwest and west of the time equivalent shallow marine sandstones of the Sognefjord and Krossfjord Formations in the Gjøa, Fram East and Troll Fields.

Both intra Heather sandstones were saturated with light oil of good quality to the base of the reservoirs

in an ODT situation. The ODT was found 260m below the mapped crest of the structure in the upper

sand and 360m below the crest in the lower sand. Based on the PVT data Skarfjell may have a gas cap updip of the discovery well. The oils in the two sands have slightly different density and composition and fall on the same pressure gradient within one bar.

The Skarfjell structure is cut by a series of northwest-­‐southeast trending normal faults formed by extension during several episodes in the Late Jurassic. The faults are relatively short and the reservoir is likely to be connected through non faulted areas and across faults with small throw. The faults are likely to have been active during deposition of the intra Heather sandstones which are generally thought to be thickening downdip.

Due to the relative poor quality of the seismic data and the location of the discovery at, or close to, the shallow marine to offshore depositional transition, there is a significant uncertainty on the reservoir distribution, in addition to the reservoir thickness and quality. Furthermore the depth of the OWC is still unknown and the presence and thickness of a gas cap is uncertain.

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These uncertainties are the focus of the appraisal program which consists of a Skarfjell North appraisal well in PL418 and a Skarfjell South appraisal well in PL378. The main objectives of the two appraisal wells and optional sidetracks are to find the hydrocarbon contacts and to acquire 3-­‐4 reservoir penetrations with a full set of reservoir data including a DST in one of the wellbores.

Wintershall Norge AS thanks the partners: Agora Oil & Gas, Bayerngas Norge AS, Edison International Norway Branch & RDE Dea Norge AS for permission to publish this extended abstract.

Norge AS for permission to publish this extended abstract. P50 GOC 2553 m TVDSS Crest at
P50 GOC 2553 m TVDSS Crest at 2394 m TVDSS
2553 m
Crest at 2394
abstract. P50 GOC 2553 m TVDSS Crest at 2394 m TVDSS IH2 ODT 35/9-7 at 2660

IH2 ODT 35/9-7 at 2660 m TVDSS

General Spillpoint at 2990 m TVDSS

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Constructed Top Oxfordian Turbidites IH2 Depth Map

35/9-­‐7 CPI showing very good reservoir quality of Intra Heather Sandstones 1 & 2.
35/9-­‐7 CPI
showing very
quality of
Intra Heather
Sandstones 1
& 2.

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Arbitrary seismic line from the RD1201 3D seismic survey across the Skarfjell Discovery
seismic line
from the
RD1201 3D
survey across
the Skarfjell

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