Drilling has begun on the FAN-1 exploration well, offshore Senegal, using Transocean's fifth-generation semisubmersible, Cajun Express. The rig arrived on-site Saturday, 12 April, and drilling operations on the FAN-1 well are expected to last approximately two months.
Cairn Energy PLC is operator of the JV, through its subsidiary Capricorn Senegal Ltd., with 40% interest, on behalf of partners ConocoPhillips (35%), FAR Ltd. (15%), and the Government of Senegal (Petrosen, 10%).
The well will test a stacked fan structure (North Fan prospect) with the potential to contain approximately 900 million bbl of oil (MMbbl), according to FAR Ltd.
FAN-1 is the first of two exploration wells that will be drilled back-to-back. The FAN-1 well is in 1500m water depth. This well will be immediately followed by a second well, SNE-1, targeting a shelf edge prospect in 1100m of water.
These will be the first deepwater (>1000m) wells drilled in Senegalese waters and the first offshore wells to be drilled for over 20 years. The two exploration wells will test combined prospective resources of approximately 1.5 billion bbl of unrisked prospective resources.
Far Ltd. says the FAN-1 well is a pure exploration well and, even if successful, will not be completed as a commercial production well. In the event of a success, the JV may decide to conduct further drilling and evaluation activities.
Cairn holds back 2015 plans, 18 March 2014
Conoco adds Senegal stake, 1 August 2013
Cairn enters Senegal, 21 March 2013
FAR ups offshore Africa estimates, 27 February 2013