Oil India hires KCS for 3D at KG-ONN-2004/1

Vol 13, PW 15 (14 Jan 10) Exploration & Production

All eyes are on onland exploration block KG-ONN-2004/1 as Oil India gears up to shoot 500-sq km 3D seismic across the second most fiercely contested piece of acreage from NELP-VI.

PETROWATCH learns Oil India issued a Letter of Award (LoA) to Kazakhstan-based contractor KCS on December 10, following a tender that saw seven companies bid, including CGGVeritas and Polish contractor Geofyzika Torun. KCS, however, is apparently unhappy with the LoA, and wants Oil India to issue a weightier Letter of Intent (LoI) before mobilising.

“ECS thinks it will take only three to four months to carry out the survey,â€‌ says a source. “But we think it will take more like six to seven months.

â€‌ In eastern India, onland seismic shoots typically halt for three months in June as heavy monsoon rains hit the region. Oil India, we learn, tentatively expects to complete the survey by the end of the year.

But luckily, drilling plans are not dependent on the 3D, which will be simultaneously processed and interpreted in 100-sq km chunks, as it is acquired. Using the results from 450-lkm old ONGC data, re-processed by CGGVeritas, operator Oil India (90%) and Canadian partner GeoGlobal Resources (10%) have identified four drilling locations for three exploration wells planned this year.

“Oil India has set an internal target to drill the first exploration well by August,â€‌ adds a source. “Four drilling locations are being reviewed internally.

â€‌ Over the next few days expect to see publication of a tender for two 2500-hp rigs to drill the Oil India wells to depths of up to 5500 metres targeting lower cretaceous formations. All rigs and supplies to this heavily forested, swampy and logistically difficult to access 549-sq km block will arrive by sea.