Adani Welspun future rides on Aban-VII drilling

Vol 15, PW 24 (14 Jun 12) Exploration & Production

Adani Welspun Exploration faces its final reckoning at 1191-sq km NELP-VII Mumbai offshore block MB-OSN-2005/2.

PETROWATCH learns Aban Offshore jack-up Aban-VII mobilised to the block on June 5 and is being readied to begin drilling five exploration wells committed under the four-year Phase-I exploration programme. Anticipation is building as Aban-VII is set to spud the first well on June 17 in water depths of 30 metres.

“Adani Welspun has had little luck in the exploration business,” says an industry source. “Everybody at the company and at its promoters (the Adani and Welspun groups) is desperately hoping for a gas discovery.

They have spent a lot on exploration but have seen no return.” Adani Welspun wants to target the Tapti and Daman geological formations, prospecting for gas.

Each of the five proposed wells is likely to take up to 70 days to drill to depths ranging from 2800 metres to 3100 metres. Adani Welspun is believed to be paying approximately $66,000/day to Aban Offshore for the rig, hired for two ‘firm’ and three ‘optional’ wells.

“Adani will definitely drill all five wells,” we hear. Another source believes Adani Welspun’s decision to go ahead with drilling despite the approaching monsoon season is foolhardy or just bad planning.

Then again, perhaps it’s encouraged by the promise of “good gas quantities” after interpreting and processing 3D shot by WesternGeco in February 2010. Elsewhere Adani Welspun had a major setback in mid-May at the 75-sq km Naftogaz-operated onland NELP-VI Palej block in Gujarat or CB-ONN-2004/5, where Adani Welspun has a 90% stake.

An appraisal well drilled using a 2000-hp rig from Black Pearl Drilling collapsed when the drill-bit reached 2700 metres.

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