Serica Energy has announced successful flow test results from its North Sea Columbus development well.
The well was drilled to a measured depth of 5,364 metres with a horizontal section of over a mile in length in the Forties Sandstone formation.
The completion equipment has been successfully installed into the well and a flow test has now been performed, Serica said.
A stabilised flow rate towards the upper end of expected outcomes was achieved and was constrained by the surface well test equipment on board the Maersk Resilient heavy-duty jack-up drilling rig.
A diving support vessel will tie the subsea wellhead into the Arran Field export system directly after the rig leaves location.
Serica expects Columbus, which is being developed as a tieback to Shell’s Shearwater hub, to start up towards the end of this year.
Once on stream, the 14 million barrel project is anticipated to produce about 7,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day (boe/d), 75% of which is likely to be gas.
Gas will be exported through the SEGAL Pipeline to St Fergus, while oil will be taken through the Forties system to Cruden Bay.
Columbus was discovered by Serica in 2006. The independent oil and gas company has a 50% interest in the project and has been its operator throughout the exploration, appraisal and field development stages.
Serica has developed the field in conjunction with its partners Waldorf Production and Tailwind Energy.
In order to minimise emissions, minimal subsea equipment has been installed to enable Columbus to be tied in to adjacent infrastructure.
Mitch Flegg, chief executive of Serica, said: “We are delighted to have achieved the objectives of this challenging but ultimately very successful campaign.
“This is a significant milestone for Serica, demonstrating our ability to successfully lead a development project as well as being a proven efficient production operator.
“I would like to acknowledge the skill, hard-work and dedication of our operational team who have made this outcome possible. I would also like to recognise the input and support of our joint venture partners Waldorf Production and Tailwind Energy.
“Columbus is part of Serica’s ongoing capital investment programme which is aimed at boosting production in the second half of this year and beyond. I look forward to updating the market when we bring this Columbus well and the recently announced Rhum R3 well into production.”