Geopetrol to drill extra coreholes at CBM block

Vol 15, PW 5 (08 Sep 11) Exploration & Production

Monaco-headquartered Geopetrol plans to exceed its Phase-I drilling commitments at the Sohagpur North CBM block in Madhya Pradesh, where it partners Anil Ambani-controlled Reliance.

PETROWATCH learns last month (August) Geopetrol told service providers working at the Sohagpur block it wants to drill 13 coreholes in total, against the eight committed when it bid for this 609-sq km block in CBM-III. “Geopetrol has yet to formally extend our contract,” says a service provider working on this project.

“But it has confirmed its intention verbally.” Gurgaon-based CBM drilling contractor South West Pinnacle, he adds, has completed four coreholes at this block since February 8, 2011.

“South West Pinnacle is at present drilling the fifth corehole,” adds another source working at the block. “Gas content in core samples collected from the first and second coreholes was very poor but samples collected from the third and fourth coreholes had ‘good’ gas content.

” Our source blames the poor results at the first and second coreholes on the ‘major fault zone’ under this block. He believes Geopetrol’s block is not as “prospective” as the nearby 450-sq km Sohagpur East CBM block or the 500-sq km Sohagpur West CBM block, both operated by Mukesh Ambani-controlled Reliance Industries.

Sohagpur East and Sohagpur West are together estimated to hold 3.65-tcf of gas reserves, a figure endorsed by the DGH. “But the problem at Sohagpur North is the coal seams are not connected because of the fault zone,” we learn.

“Gas is stranded in small coal seam pockets or 'clusters'.” To better understand this complex geology, Geopetrol might even eventually decide to drill even more than 13 coreholes spread right across this block.

Besides South West Pinnacle, other service providers working for Geopetrol at this block include Scintrex which is doing ‘logging’ and Total CBM solutions which is testing corehole samples.