UK North Sea: Shell Hits Gas at Pensacola

©Maersk Drilling
©Maersk Drilling

Oil major Shell, which is currently drilling the high-impact Pensacola well in the UK North Sea, has encountered gas at the site's reservoir and has recommended to its partners Deltic and One Dyas that a full well testing program be undertaken.

Deltic, which shared the news on Wednesday, said that the joint venture had endorsed Shell's recommendation to carry out a full well test to evaluate the commerciality of the Pensacola prospect and update the geological model.

"Deltic will provide a drilling update announcement in respect of Pensacola on completion of well testing which is expected to take approximately 30 days," Deltic said.

Graham Swindells, Chief Executive of Deltic Energy, added:"We are very pleased to have encountered hydrocarbons in the Pensacola exploration well at this intermediate stage of well operations. We now look forward to working with the operator on the well testing program and will update the market once that program is completed.”

Pensacola is a Zechstein Reef prospect in the Southern North Sea. It is located west of the Breagh gas field. Shell spudded the Pensacola well in November 2022, using the Maersk Resilient (now Noble Resilient) jack-up rig.

Deltic estimates the prospect to contain gross P50 Prospective Resources of 309 BCF, with a 55% geological chance of success, which, the company says, will rank Pensacola as one of the highest impact exploration targets to be drilled in the gas basin in recent years. 

Upon the completion of the current contract with Shell, the Noble Resilient rig will start its four well intervention scope in the U.K. North Sea for INEOS under a $5.5 million contract.

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