Equinor to Spud Egyptian Vulture Offshore Well in August

July 26, 2021

The West Hercules drilling rig in the Barents Sea. (Photos: Ole Jørgen Bratland)
The West Hercules drilling rig in the Barents Sea. (Photos: Ole Jørgen Bratland)

Norwegian energy firm Equinor is expected to spud the Egyptian Vulture exploration well in the Norwegian Sea in late August, using Seadrill's West Hercules semi-submersible drilling rig.

This is according to Longboat Energy, Equinor's partner in the project.

The well is targeting gross mean prospective resources of 103mmboe with further potential upside to bring the total to 208mmboe. The Geological Chance of Success associated with this prospect is 25%1 with the key risk being related to reservoir quality/thickness, Longboat said.

Equinor secured drilling permission to drill the well, located close to the Equinor-operated Åsgard field, in May.

The well is expected to take up to four weeks to drill with a pre-carry net cost to Longboat of c.$5 million (c.$1m post tax), Longboat said.

"Upon success, there is the potential to provide low-CO2 blending gas to the nearby Equinor operated infrastructure (Åsgard) allowing for the possibility of rapid monetization," Longboat added.

Egyptian Vulture is an Upper Cretaceous turbidite play bounded within a regional graben located in the prolific Halten-Dønna Terrace. The prospect has been significantly de-risked by a strong AVO anomaly analogous to the large Hades discovery made by Faroe Petroleum in 2018 along with several other nearby Cretaceous discoveries also made by the Longboat management team (Solberg, Rodriguez, T-Rex), Longboat said.

"Egyptian Vulture marks the first of an anticipated seven well exploration program which will be drilled by Longboat over the next 18 months on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (“NCS”) targeting net mean prospective resource potential of 104MMboe1 with additional 220 MMboe1 of upside and follow-on prospectivity," Longboat said.

"The drilling program has the potential to create a Net Asset Value of over $1 billion based on precedent transactions on the NCS for development assets," the company said.

The next well in the program is scheduled to start in mid-September and will target the Rodhette prospect (Longboat 20%) using the deepwater Scarabeo 8 semi-submersible drilling rig. 

"This is a proven Jurassic Play in the Hammerfest Basin with a potential 30km tie-back distance to the Goliat Field for early potential monetization," Longboat said.

Helge Hammer, Chief Executive of Longboat, said: “We are excited at the prospect of drilling our first exploration well and can now look forward to a busy period of almost continuous drilling and frequent value catalysts during the next 18 months with a combined upside value potential in excess of $1 billion.

“Exploration activity in Norway is picking up and during the first six months of 2021, a total of 17 exploration wells have been completed, resulting in eight discoveries. On Egyptian Vulture we are partnering with one of the most successful explorers on the NCS and a successful well could add more than 15 million boe of net contingent resources with significant monetization opportunities.

"Our plan remains to build Longboat in to a full-cycle, North Sea E&P company. We believe the momentum built by the initial acquisitions will enable us to take advantage of the increasing number of opportunities we are seeing in the market.”



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