Manepalli drilling plans at BG Shirke Construction

Vol 15, PW 21 (03 May 12) Exploration & Production

Better known for building sports stadia and corporate buildings, Pune-headquartered BG Shirke Construction Technology is poised to drill four development wells at ONGC’s Manepalli marginal field at Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh.

Named after its founder BG Shirke, this relative newcomer to the E&P sector operates Manepalli under a service contract signed with ONGC on April 5, 2007. PETROWATCH learns on April 23 (last month) Essar Oilfields Services-owned 2000-hp land rig LR-3 reached Vizag port from a yard at Jebel Ali in the UAE where it was being refurbished.

Shirke hired LR-3 at a day rate of around $25,000 to drill four ‘firm’ and three ‘optional’ wells. Essar mobilised to the site by April 27 and began preparing the rig to spud the first planned well.

“‘Rig up’ (assembling the rig) and arranging consumables for the drilling campaign will take at least 20 days,” reports an ONGC source. “Shirke wants to spud the well on May 23.

” When it bid for Manepalli, he adds, Shirke committed to drill only two development wells but later decided to exceed its commitment and drill four wells to better study field reserves. Each of these High Pressure/High Temperature wells is likely to take at least two months to drill and complete to about 4000 metres TD, targeting the Palakollu Shale of the Palaeocene age.

Under ONGC’s service contract, any gas produced can be used only at a captive power station. “But Shirke can sell gas as CNG if it wins a CGD license for Manepalli from the PNGRB (Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board),” we are told.

ONGC has drilled only one exploration well at Manepalli, spud on January 22, 1990 and drilled to 3804 metres by August 4 that year.