Carnarvon Petroleum Limited (ASX:CVN) is advancing plans to drill the Buffalo oilfield redevelopment project in Timor-Leste territorial waters in the third quarter of 2019.
Last week the company mobilised a team to undertake field surveillance in the area of the proposed redevelopment.
This work was carried out to determine potential future surface locations for wells, the platform and flowline to a Floating Production, Storage and Offloading vessel (FPSO).
The Buffalo field layout schematic.
No impediments to proposed well locations
Data from the survey indicates that there are no impediments to locating the wells in the surface locations most ideal for targeting the identified attic of oil.
Additional analysis is continuing to be being undertaken by the company.
READ: Carnarvon Petroleum progressing one of the largest oil resources ever found on the North West Shelf
Carnarvon is also exploring the Dorado and Phoenix projects at the southern end of the North West Shelf offshore Western Australia with this work attracting plenty of attention.
As part of Buffalo preparations, Carnarvon has submitted an environmental plan for the drilling of up to three wells in the field.
Preparations also involve engaging with the governments of Australia and Timor-Leste to be able to drill a well in the Timor-Leste jurisdiction.
Carnarvon was awarded the WA-523-P acreage in May 2016, including the previously developed Buffalo field, for an initial six-year term.
The field was discovered by BHP in 1996 and developed using four wells drilled from a small, unmanned wellhead platform installed in 25 metres water depth, tied back to an FPSO.
Production began in December 1999 at daily rates up to about 50,000 stock tank barrels (stb) of highly-undersaturated, light oil (53°API) from the Jurassic-age Elang Formation.
It ended in November 2004 after the production of 20.5 million stb with all existing facilities and wells decommissioned and removed before Carnarvon was awarded the block.
Seismic dataset reprocessed
Carnarvon initially focused on reprocessing of the 3D seismic dataset using state-of-the-art full waveform inversion (FWI) technology.
This supports the interpretation of a significant attic oil accumulation remaining after the original development.
Buffalo represents a low-risk oil field redevelopment.
Reservoir modelling has been conducted using the latest structural interpretation and available well data.
This included an extensive history-matching effort to calibrate model/well performance to production rates and water-cut development (governed by strong aquifer drive) observed during the original production period.
Carnarvon believes the project appears economically compelling based on its preliminary mean recoverable volume of 31 million barrels, which has been reviewed by leading independent consulting firm RISC.
To emphasise the scale of this project, at today’s oil price Buffalo would generate a revenue of more than $3 billion over a project life of a few years.
The proposed Buffalo wellhead platform.