Cobalt’s Lontra 1 off Angola taps “Global Scale” reserves

New Wave Media

January 28, 2014

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Cobalt International Energy recently said the drill stem test results at its Lontra 1 pre-salt well off Angola were "exceptional, with excellent quality reservoirs that are better than we had expected". This may be the first major pre-salt find in WA that matches some of the huge pre-salt plays uncorked in Brazil. Drilled to a depth of 4,195 meters (13,843 feet) and penetrating some 75 meters of net pay, Cobalt said that, "while further appraisal drilling will be required to determine the ultimate size of the Lontra field, it is clear that Lontra is a discovery on a global scale”. Also claiming that, "the exceptional reservoir system that we have discovered ranks among the best that we have seen."

Lontra is a pre-salt prospect off Angola in Block 20. Petroserv's SSV Catarina (UDW semi-sub) started drilling the Lontra-1 pre-salt exploration well in the second quarter of 2013 in deepwater, at a water depth of 1,400 meters. The well indicated a bigger gas content than the partnership between operator Cobalt (40%), BP Plc (30%) and Angola's state company Sonangol (30%) had been anticipating, Cobalt said. But this was not a problem given that Lontra lies off the Angolan capital Luanda, where there may be an emerging market for the gas. For Cobalt, whose stock has underperformed due to uncertainty over the drilling result, the announcement is "a clear positive relative to current share price and market sentiment", said a Deutsche Bank research note, which also stated that the field could contain around 1 billion boe.

Operators are increasing their drilling efforts in WA looking at uncorking potentially large pre-salt reservoirs in the region. Leading geologists agree that Africa's west coast has geological formations under the seabed with the same geophysical characteristics found off the Brazilian coast.


Paschoa, Claudio
Claudio Paschoa is Marine Technology Reporter's correspondent in Brazil.
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