Falkland Islands explorer Rockhopper Exploration (RKH) has secured the Ocean Guardian drilling rig for another well in the burgeoning oil province.
AIM-listed Rockhopper intends to use to the additional well slot to drill a well on the north-western acreage of licence PL004, which it believes contains the extension to the famed Sea Lion field.
Last week, the company announced a farm-in deal with fellow Falklands’ explorer Desire Petroleum (DES), to farm in to that part of the north-western acreage of licence PL004 known as Area 1, as well as into the north-eastern part of licence PL004 known as Area 2.
Under the terms of last week's agreement, Rockhopper said it would fund the cost of drilling a well in Area 1, of which it will become operator. The deal will see it increase its stake in the play from 7.5% to 60%.
As a result, Rockhopper went ahead with a £46.5 million share placing, the proceeds of which will go towards drilling the new well and to complete appraisal drilling on the part of Sea Lion in its licence.
Desire Petroleum said Rockhopper intend to utilise the additional slot to drill a well on the north western acreage of license PL004, “which Rockhopper believes contains the extension to the Sea Lion Field”. Rockhopper has farmed in with Desire to earn an aggregate 60% interest. Desire retains a 40% interest. The well will be located in Area 1 of the proposed farm-in area, which will become known as license PL004b.
Prior to drilling the well in Area 1, Rockhopper will shortly drill well 14/10-9, the eighth well on the Sea Lion feature in licence PL032. It follows the completion of exploration well 14/10-8, which proved to be a dry hole, but provided the company with useful information.
While the well encountered thick reservoir packages within all three targets, all sands were water wet, the company said. It was plugged and abandoned as planned.
“Ocean Guardian” which belongs to Diamond Offshore Drilling and which has done all the drilling so far in Falklands’ water is on a contract with Desire Petroleum.