Equinor Strikes Oil and Gas in North Sea

Wells 35/11-26 S and 35/11-26 A were drilled by the Deepsea Stavanger drilling facility. Photo: Odfjell Drilling
Wells 35/11-26 S and 35/11-26 A were drilled by the Deepsea Stavanger drilling facility. Photo: Odfjell Drilling

Norwegian oil company Equinor has discovered oil and gas in the North Sea, 130 kilometers northwest of Bergen, Norway, while drilling wells 35/11-26 S and 35/11-26 A.

According to Equinor, this is the ninth successful well in this area in 12 attempts since 2019. 

Equinor is the operator of the licence, and Vår Energi, INPEX Idemitsu Norge and Neptune Energy Norge are partners.

Geir Sørtveit, senior vice president for Exploration & Production West said: “It is positive that we can still make such discoveries in an area with a good oil and gas infrastructure, allowing the discoveries to be developed at low costs and with low CO2 emissions," says Geir Sørtveit, Equinor’s senior vice president for Exploration & Production West.

The primary exploration target for wildcat well 35/11-26 S was to prove petroleum in sandstone in the Heather Formation from the Late Jurassic and the Brent Group from the Middle Jurassic, as well as to investigate reservoir properties in the Cook Formation from the Early Jurassic.

The secondary exploration target was to collect reservoir data in the Lista Formation from the Palaeocene.

Well 35/11-26 S encountered a 7-meter gas column and a 26-meter oil column in the Heather Formation, in sandstone layers totaling 33 meters with moderate to good reservoir quality. The oil/water contact was not encountered.

The Brent Group and the Cook Formation were water-filled with moderate to good reservoir quality.

The secondary exploration target in the Lista Formation was not encountered.

Well 35/11-26 A encountered sandstones of moderate to good reservoir quality in the Heather Formation; the reservoir was aquiferous.

Oil and gas were also proven in shallower intra-Heather sandstones in both wells.

Discovery size

The discovery consists of both oil and gas, mostly oil.  Preliminary estimates place the discovery size between 1.5 and 5.5 million Sm3 of recoverable oil equivalent or about 9 – 35 million barrels of oil equivalent (mboe). 

The wells were drilled about four kilometers west of the Fram field, and the licensees will now assess the discovery development via the existing infrastructure in the Fram area, along with other discoveries in the vicinity.

The wells were not formation-tested, but extensive data acquisition and sampling were conducted.

These are the 21st and 22nd exploration wells in production licence 090. The licence was awarded in the 8th licensing round in 1984.

The Well 35/11-26 S was drilled to a vertical depth of 3409 meters and a measured depth of 3770 meters below sea level and was terminated in the Amundsen Formation from the Early Jurassic.

Well, 35/11-26 A was drilled to a vertical depth of 3000 meters and a measured depth of 3421 meters below sea level and was terminated in the Heather Formation from the Late Jurassic.

The water depth at the site is 356 meters. The wells have been permanently plugged and abandoned.

The two wells were drilled by the Deepsea Stavanger semi-submersible drilling rig, which will now drill wildcat well 30/11-15 in production licence 035 in the North Sea, where Equinor Energy AS is the operator.

The eight previous discoveries in the area are: Echino South, Swisher, Røver North, Blasto, Toppand, Kveikje, Røver South, and Heisenberg.

Commenting on the latest discovery, Geir Sørtveit, Equinor’s senior vice president for Exploration & Production West said: “It is positive that we can still make such discoveries in an area with a good oil and gas infrastructure, allowing the discoveries to be developed at low costs and with low CO2 emissions.

Equinor is the operator of the licence, and Vår Energi, INPEX Idemitsu Norge and Neptune Energy Norge are partners.

Current News

Women in Maritime Day: Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety

Women in Maritime Day: Shaping

New Dutch Coalition Aims for More Offshore Gas Extraction

New Dutch Coalition Aims for M

Iberdrola to Triple Offshore Wind Assets

Iberdrola to Triple Offshore W

ABS Wavesight eLog Books for Offshore Drilling

ABS Wavesight eLog Books for O

Subscribe for OE Digital E‑News

Offshore Engineer Magazine