Grane oil field success at OTC

May 3, 2006, 14:30 CEST

The impressive development of the Grane field was among the topics covered at the large Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston on Tuesday. This Hydro-operated field produces the heaviest oil in the Norwegian part of the North Sea, and recently set a production record.

"The Grane field is the first heavy oil field on the Norwegian continental shelf, and currently supplies the market with more than 220,000 barrels of oil per 24-hour period," said Senior Vice President Jan Arve Haugan as he opened the Grane session during the technical part of the OTC programme. Haugan heads the business area Oseberg-Grane in Hydro's Operations sector.

It is gratifying for Hydro that the OTC programme committee chose Grane as a topic for its technical programme.

The gathering heard the story of a demanding development project that was completed on time and on budget, with the Hydro sectors Operations and Projects and external suppliers and partners working closely together. The field came on stream in September 2003.

"The reserves in place exceed 700 million barrels, and will be produced with the help of 31 production wells. We expect to achieve a recovery rate of more than 60 per cent, among other things with the aid of multilateral wells," Haugan told the audience.

The first of the multilateral wells started producing in the beginning of March, and contributed to the field setting a production record of 243,000 barrels per 24-hour period. The record was set on 10 March, and exceeds the production capacity estimated in the original field plan by around 30,000 barrels.

The drilling programme for the Grane field includes eleven new multilateral wells in the period up until 2010. With cost-effective wells of this kind, Hydro intends to maintain a high production rate on the field in the coming years.

Haugan's general introduction was followed by several presentations where Hydro's experts briefed the audience on technical problems in connection with the development and operation of the Grane field.

Incidentally, the Grane experience is highly relevant within Hydro's international business development work, not least on the heavy oil field Chinook offshore Brazil - where Hydro is currently working on the field development plan in cooperation with its partner Kerr-McGee.