Cairn plans wells to boost Ravva production

Vol 14, PW 17 (24 Feb 11) Exploration & Production

Cairn India is proposing an estimated $44m drilling campaign at its ageing eastern offshore Ravva field to reverse declining oil and gas production.

PETROWATCH learns Ravva operator Cairn held a series of meetings this month (February) with partners ONGC, Videocon and Marubeni-controlled Ravva Oil to discuss the work programme and budget for the 2011-12 fiscal, beginning April 1. DGH officials attended the last in this series of meetings - a technical committee meeting held on February 16.

At the meetings, Cairn outlined plans to drill two new ‘infill’ wells and to ‘workover’ two old Ravva wells by March 2012. Drilling each new infill well could cost as much as $11m, says a consortium source, and the same is true for each workover well.

He explains that workover wells typically cost less than new wells but it is not unusual for workover costs to rise depending on the type of work. The Ravva consortium hopes to strike “small pools of oil” with the two infill wells, we are told, while its two-well workover programme aims to find oil left untapped by earlier drilling campaigns.

“It’s difficult to say how much additional oil and gas could be gained from these planned wells,” says our Ravva source. “We’ll have a better idea only once technical discussions conclude and the DGH approves the proposal.

” Ravva partners are clear that drilling additional wells is the only way to arrest sharply falling oil and gas ‘yields’ from this ‘mature’ field. Ravva produces 25,000 b/d at present but produced nearly 50,000 b/d a decade ago.

Ravva gas production has also fallen over the last 10 years from a peak of 3m cm/d to 1.6m cm/d today. Aban Offshore jack-up Aban-II, hired last year for a separate five-well Ravva campaign, has nearly completed her first well.