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Tuesday, 24 October 2017 03:08

Hess inks $2 billion Norway sale

Aker BP has agreed to buy Hess Norge, which includes major stakes in the Valhall and Hod fields, from Hess for US$2 billion as the US oil firm continues an offshore asset sale.

Yesterday, Kosmos Energy said it had agreed to acquire Hess' 85% stake in two long-producing oil fields, Cieba and Okume, in Equatorial Guinea for $650 million. Announcing the deal with Aker BP, Hess said it is now also moving to sell its Danish assets, comprising a 61.5% stake in the South Arne field. 

Through today's sale, Aker BP - will become the sole owner of the Valhall and Hod fields, taking on Hess’ 64.05% and 62.5% stakes, respectively. 

Hess CEO John Hess said: “Proceeds from these asset sales, along with cash on the balance sheet, will prefund development of our world class investment opportunity in offshore Guyana, where we have participated in one of the world’s largest oil discoveries of the past decade [the Liza discovery]."

Aker BP says the move will strengthen its position on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, increasing production and reserves “significantly,” with an estimated proven and probable (2P) reserves of 150 MMboe and best estimate 2C contingent resources of 195 MMboe.

Aker BP is planning to submit a plan for development and operation for the Valhall Flank West project in late 2017, with estimated first oil in 2020. In addition, Aker BP is maturing a number of additional projects in the area, including the North and South Flank projects.

Early January 2017, Valhall and Hod passed 1 billion boe produced, which is more than three times the volume expected at the opening of the field in 1982. “The ambition is to produce a further 500 MMboe,” says Aker BP.

Aker BP CEO Karl Johnny Hersvik says: “Aker BP has a clear ambition to be the leading independent offshore E&P company. This transaction is an important step in that direction. Taking full ownership and control allows Aker BP to pursue upsides more aggressively.”

However, the firm says it will seek to sell or swap a minority interest in the fields to partners who want to work with Aker BP to target upside potential in the area.

During the first nine months of 2017, Hess Norge’s share of production from the Valhall and Hod fields was about 24,000 boe/d.

The Valhall field center consists of six separate steel platforms for living quarters, drilling, production, water injection, and a combined process- and hotel platform. Two unmanned and remotely operated flank platforms (North and South) sit about 6km north and south of the field center. 

The Hod field is developed with an unmanned wellhead platform, 13km south of Valhall, and is remotely operated from the Valhall field center. All wells on the Hod platform are currently shut-in and awaiting plugging and abandonment. The Hod reservoir is now being produced from wells drilled from the Valhall South Flank platform.

Hess Norge today has 19 staff. Board members are Johan Nic Vold (chair), Anders Nymann, Brian Truelove, Martin Edwards, Helena Deal and Gerbert Schoonman. Edwards is also managing director. The deal is expected to close by the end of the year.

Hess' sales process relating to its Danish assets is expected to be completed in 2018. The South Arne field produced an average 11,000 boe/d net to Hess in 1H 2017.

Image: Valhall.

Friday, 20 October 2017 03:18

Chevron sanctions Captain EOR project

US oil major Chevron is moving ahead with plans for an enhanced oil recovery (EOR) project using polymer technology on its Captain heavy oil field in the UK North Sea.

The Captain field was discovered in 1977, in Block 13/22a on the edge of the outer Moray Firth. The billion-barrel field achieved first production in March 1997 – 20 years ago this year – thanks to developments in horizontal drilling and down-hole pumps. 

Stage 1 of the EOR project, which follows several EOR pilot programs at Captain, will see the drilling of up to six long-reach horizontal injection wells. 

Since 2010, Chevron has been trialing polymer EOR on its Captain heavy oil field. Earlier this year, the firm started its fourth pilot project on the field to further refine its polymer EOR plans for Captain. 

Norway's Statoil has also been putting the technology to test on its Heidrun field, with plans for further pilots on other fields in coming years.

Meanwhile both of these firms, along with BP and Shell, which have been considering use of polymer EOR on the Quad 204 project, have been taking part in an industry Task Force on EOR, which today, under the Oil and Gas Authority, published Polymer Enhanced Oil Recovery - Industry Lessons Learned. Find the document here

The Captain facilities comprise a wellhead protector platform and bridge linked platform connected to a floating production, storage and pffloading vessel.

For many years, the field has been under waterflood, which means a lot of effort is put into water production and treatment (some 300,000 b/d of water are produced). However, there is still a lot of bypassed oil, because of the way waterflood results in a “coning” effect in the reservoir.

Chevron Upstream Europe managing director Greta Lydecker said: “Sanctioning Stage 1 EOR at Captain is an important milestone in the development of the technology, which we believe will improve the recovery rate from older fields and help extend the life of assets.”

Oil & Gas Authority (OGA) Area Manager Eric Marston said: “Polymer EOR has the potential to increase recovery, extend field life and stimulate field redevelopments. Chevron, along with BP, Shell and Statoil, has been a driving force behind the industry-led EOR task force. I commend their openness in sharing their lessons learned with the wider industry and their contribution to the OGA’s ‘Polymer Enhanced Oil Recovery – Industry Lessons Learned’ publication which will be published shortly.”

CNSL holds 85% and is the operator of the Captain field, Dana Petroleum (E&P) holds 15%.

Read more

Elaine Maslin surveys some of the heavy oil field developments in the UK Continental Shelf, plus some of the technology aimed at unlocking it.

Offshore enhanced oil recovery pilots by Chevron and Statoil in the North Sea are paving the way towards helping to get more heavy oil out of the ground. Elaine Maslin reports.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017 01:24

Shearwater delivers Eastern Med 3D data

Shearwater GeoServices has delivered a 3D Fast Track Pre-Stack Depth Migration (PreSDM) product for Edison International, following the efficient acquisition of a high quality 3D SHarp broadband dataset in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Simon Telfer, VP Processing and Imaging of Shearwater, stated that "Edison required a PreSDM volume within weeks of completing the 3D acquisition. We delivered to Edison a full 3D Pre-Stack Depth Migration product, including broadband processing and iterative model-building in just over four weeks from the final acquired shot record. We are excited to be able to offer high-end Depth Imaging as part of our Fast-Track products across our vessels."

Bruno Garcea, Seismic Supervisor of Edison’s Egypt branch, affirmed "Depth Imaging and Broadband technology are key elements to achieve a better seismic image of sub-salt plays in the Eastern Mediterranean. So we required, for the first time, to obtain a quick depth volume immediately after acquisition. Shearwater took up the challenge and, just a few weeks after the last shot, delivered us a good quality and robust FT PreSDM product."

Tuesday, 05 September 2017 02:21

OE17: Aker launching MultiBooster

Aker Solutions (stand 5C100) is launching its MultiBooster, a new, up to 6MW subsea multiphase pump to help operators maximize production from existing oil and gas fields, at SPE Offshore Europe this week.

Aker Solutions says the now qualified, standardized and modular design pump is more powerful than any other pump currently available, making it ideal for increasing the pressure on long step-outs and tie-backs.

The centrifugal pump is driven by new subsea induction motors, which can boost from 1-6 MW with the same mechanical platform by varying the pump impellers and the number of stages.  

The system is fitted with advanced condition monitoring, including proximity probes to accurately measure radial and axial displacements of the rotor, with integrated software and data analytics, to maintain efficiency and for cost effectiveness.

The industry is looking to get more out of the assets they already have. In many cases, these assets include older fields which require more pressure—that’s where the MultiBooster comes in, said Marco Gabelloni, business development director at Aker Solutions.

Aker Solutions says the MultiBooster’s combination of generated pressure and boost capacity means it can be deployed in a wide range of oil fields with various flow rates, water depths (down to 3000m) and long tie-back distances.

System performance has been proven through an extensive testing campaign in a full-scale multiphase test loop at Tranby, Norway, with varying mixtures of water and gas to demonstrate the MultiBooster’s gas handling capabilities.

Together with the POWERJump, which was qualified earlier this year, the MultiBooster complements Aker Solutions portfolio of subsea multiphase pumps by providing solutions for all types of boosting applications.

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