Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO

MEO Australia says independent studies have indicated that gas in the Epenarra structure in permit NT/P68 in the Timor Sea could be suitable for liquefied natural gas production.
Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO Timor Sea field fit for LNG production: MEO

The Melbourne-based company today said the studies sampled the actual gas inclusions preserved in rock cuttings acquired while drilling the Heron-1 well through the 50m gas-bearing zone of the Epenarra structure.

The independent studies were managed by IPSA Consulting and conducted by CSIRO Petroleum.

“The results provide the best pre-drill indication that gas in the Epenarra structure could be suitable for LNG production,” MEO said.

“Quantitative grain fluorescence on extract (QGF-E), total scanning fluorescence, and Raman laser microprobe analysis of the fluid inclusions indicate that the 50m gas-bearing interval is saturated with hydrocarbons and that the hydrocarbon phase is condensate.”

The company said massbalance calculations showed the hydrocarbon inventory in the Epenarra structure will most likely have a high (around 100 barrels per million cubic feet) condensate gas ratio.

It also said the total scanning fluorescence signature of the QGF-E extracts is comparable to known condensate reservoirs. Microprobe analysis combined with petrographic studies found the level of carbon dioxide in the hydrocarbons to be very low, between 1% and 3%.

“These findings corroborate the findings of previous studies, which modelled the most probable gas quality in the event that the Epenarra structure received its hydrocarbon charge largely from the underlying optimum source rock – the Echuca Shoals Formation, with possible minor contribution from the Plover Formation,” MEO said.

“However, the precise gas quality and well deliverability can only be confirmed by the Heron-2 appraisal well, which is scheduled to commence drilling in September 2007.”

Pre-stack depth migration processing of the newly acquired 3D seismic over the Epenarra structure is on schedule, with the final volume expected to be delivered in early April.

“This additional processing will enable accurate fault and fracture distribution mapping of the 50m fractured carbonate reservoir to determine the optimum location for appraisal wells,” it said.

MEO has contracted the West Atlas jack-up rig to drill up to three wells in its 100%-owned NT/P68.

On January 29, the Federal Government granted major project facilitation status to MEO’s Timor Sea LNG Project, which is planned to be a few kilometres east of NT/P68, on Tassie Shoal.

MEO previously secured Federal environmental approvals for the project in May 2004.