Dana Petroleum has announced a successful hydrocarbon discovery at its Earn exploration well in the southern North Sea.
Earn lies in Block 42/27, around 20 miles southeast of Flamborough Head and immediately to the west of the Tolmount field, and is operated by Dana (50%) in partnership with Harbour Energy (LON:HBR).
Spudded by the Valaris 121 in July, the prospect was reported as having pre-drill estimates of around 15 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe), or up to 133 billion cubic feet of gas (P10) according to Westwood Global Energy with a roughly 70% chance of geologic success.
On Monday Dana confirmed that all components of the petroleum system had been proven by the well, which encountered a gas-saturated reservoir with thickness and properties “within pre-drill range expectations.”
“Net thickness, quality, and fluid content of the Permian age Leman Sandstone reservoir section have been evaluated using a series of logs, cores and pressure measurements,” the company added.
Dana is currently executing a side-track – well 42/27-4Z – to confirm its understanding of the scale of the accumulation and to establish its potential commerciality.
Filings with offshore regulator OPRED earlier this year estimated total drilling at Earn of around 150 days, including a contingency respudding and drilling of the sidetrack.
Earn is a potential tie-back to the Tolmount installation in neighbouring Block 42/28d, which Dana also shares with Harbour although in this case operated by the latter.
The area remains a hive of activity, with drilling completed at the nearby Tolmount East tie back project several weeks ago.
First gas from the project is now expected before the end of 2023, brought forward despite Harbour’s initial forecast for a 2024 start date.
The project is targeting around 53m barrels of oil equivalent (boe) in gas and condensates from an area around two miles east of the main field, in water depth of around 50m.