Invictus puts up oil/gas drilling rig

05 Aug, 2022 - 00:08 0 Views
Invictus puts up oil/gas drilling rig Invictus Energy managing director Scott Macmillan

eBusiness Weekly

Business Writer

INVICTUS Energy, the Australian firm exploring for oil and gas in northern Zimbabwe, has started assembling the Exalo 202 rig, imported from Tanzania, at its Mukuyu-1 prospect ahead of the commencement of exploration drilling later this month.

Ahead of the historic exploration drilling programme, the Australia Stock Exchange listed company, reported a giant upgrade in the prospective gas and condensate resources at the Mukuyu-1 exploration prospect. The Australian operator said the Mukuyu-1 prospective resource was lifted to 20 trillion cubic feet of gas and 845 million barrels of conventional condensate on a gross mean unrisked basis.

The upgrade was determined by the petroleum consultancy ERCE based on new data from the Cabora Bassa 2D seismic survey, which confirmed the potential for multiple stacked hydrocarbon bearing zones in the Mukuyu prospect, said Invictus.

Seismic survey is a method used during the exploration phase of oil and gas development. The method gives a first idea of what is present underneath the earth’s surface.

The resource upgrade for Invictus Mukuyu-1 prospect marked a 2,7-fold increase on a barrel of oil equivalent to the 2019 independent assessment by Getech Group.

The exploration junior is now on its final leg of the planned exploration drilling to prove the evidence of data gathered by American firm, Mobil in the early 90s, which Invictus reprocessed using modern technology, and own primary data collected by Canadian firm, Polaris Natural Resources, which strongly supported potential existence of petroleum deposits.

Only last week, Invictus obtained the all clear from the Environmental Management Authority (EMA), which extended the firm’s environmental impact assessment (EIA) licence until next year, giving the company ample time to investigate the existence of hydrocaborns at two of its prospective sites.

Invictus managing director, Scott MacMillan, said having an approved EIA was critical to ensure adherence to requirements of the firm’s exploration licence conditions and strict environmental standards required for the exploration programme.

He said the firm was committed to ensure minimum environmental impact from its activities.

Ahead of drilling sometime this month, MacMillan said the mobilisation of the drilling rig was nearly complete while the last loads were expected on site next week. “The rig is in the process of being assembled and once that is complete, Exalo will perform some maintenance work before we commence drilling in August.

The drilling marks the first ever time an oil and gas drilling has taken place in Zimbabwe while exploratory work thus far represents only the second time anyone has investigated the existence of petroleum deposits in Zimbabwe, since Mobil ended its search in the early 1990s, which showed huge potential for gas in the area.

“The majority of the casing, cement and mud products have also arrived at site and the well services gear from Baker Hughes such as wireline, cementing and mudlogging and the measuring while drilling packages will begin to arrive over next fortnight either at the wellsite or at our supply base in Harare to undergo servicing and preparation before being deployed to wellsite,” he said.

MacMillan further explained that wireline logging operations use sophisticated tools which are lowered into the well on an electric cable to take different measurements of samples from the borehole and reservoirs. The cable is armoured and contains electric conductors.

“As the logging tools go down the hole, it monitor and evaluate the rock and they measure the electrical resistivity of the rock and because the resistivity is different in rock where the pore spaces are filled with water or gas or oil, we can determine what the contents of the pore space is. The tools will also include tiny radioactive sources to emit a stream of neutrons into the rock with sensors and we observe the response.

“This allows us to measure the density of the rock as the tools pass by. Water, oil and gas have different densities and this assists us to determine the fluid fill of the pore space,” he said.

“Obtaining the wireline logs and fluid samples to provide us with detailed information from the borehole allows us to determine the properties of any oil or gas reservoir and is the main reason we drill the well.”
Macmillan earlier this year said:

“The Mukuyu prospect… now represents one of the largest conventional exploration targets globally.”

“The Mukuyu-1 well will test seven major targets from the 200 to 650 horizons, including the primary Upper Angwa targets, and provides the company with multiple opportunities to make a material hydrocarbon discovery.”

President Mnangagwa, speaking at the signing ceremony for the Petroleum Exploration Development and Production Agreement (PEDA) with Invictus at State House last year, said that the PEDPA represented major strides in Zimbabwe’s efforts to tap into its oil and gas deposits, which is a new territory in the country’s mining sector.

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