Reliance keeps its three deepwater rigs busy

Vol 13, PW 9 (08 Oct 09) Exploration & Production

Reliance is keeping its three Transocean-owned deepwater drillships busy, with simultaneous drilling programmes in the Krishna Godavari and Cauvery Basins on the east coast of India.

On August 31, Deepwater Expedition spud the first exploration well at NELP-III block KG-DWN-2001/1, where Reliance (90%) partners UK-listed Hardy Oil (10%). PETROWATCH learns that by October 7, Expedition had drilled a “little over 500 metresâ€‌ at well KG-D9-A1, less than expected because of a 10-day delay caused by minor technical problems at the rig.

On October 1, a Hardy press release said KG-D9-A1 would be drilled to TD of 4820 metres in water depths of 2754 metres. Expectations are high at this block, otherwise known as D9, and promisingly located next door to Reliance’s multi-tcf discoveries at D6.

Another Transocean rig Deepwater Frontier is working to increase oil production from the MA oilfield, located within the D6 licence. Oil production from MA began in September 2008, and currently stands at around 11,000 b/d.

Frontier has returned to MA to drill and complete a fifth producer, MA-7H, to add to the four added over the past 13 months. Spud between September 20 and 25, MA-7H is a horizontal well and will be drilled to TD beyond 6000 metres.

“Horizontal wells take time,â€‌ says an industry source. Still, Reliance hopes to complete MA-7H before end-October, with initial production forecast at between 3000 to 4000 b/d, rising later to 8000 b/d.

Further down the coast, a third rig, Discoverer 534, is drilling an exploratory well at NELP-III discovery block CY-DWN-2001/2 in the Cauvery Basin, spud on September 29. “This well will be drilled to TD of around 4000 metres,â€‌ says a source.

“TD should be reached in the next 10 days.â€‌ By October 6, Discoverer had drilled CY-III-D5-B1 to between 2000 and 2500 metres sub-sea.