ONGC in Bihar

Vol 14, PW 16 (10 Feb 11) News in Brief

Lawless Bihar is once again on ONGC’s exploration radar after nearly three decades, thanks to advances in seismic imaging.

Much of the new focus is on NELP-VI exploration block GV-ONN-2004/1 in the Purnea basin where ONGC must drill one exploration well in Phase-I, which ends in November 2012. “ONGC sporadically shot some 2D and drilled a few wells in Bihar in the 1970s but there were no hydrocarbon shows,” we hear.

“But exploration in this region is being taken up more aggressively as we are now using 3D to locate prospects missed during the 2D.” ONGC will be targeting the Gondwana formation at depths between 2.5-km and 4-km sub-surface and expects to spud its first well on the block “in three of four months” using an ONGC rig now drilling in West Bengal.

ONGC has also committed to drill one well in Phase-II. From 2008 to 2010, it shot 946-km 2D, exceeding its 615-km commitment, but has shot only 22-sq km 3D, far below its 200-sq km Phase-I commitment.