October 18, 1999 --- Vol. 5, No. 50October 1999

ARCO submits plans for North Slope winter exploration work

ARCO Alaska Inc. plans to drill exploration wells this winter in the western portion of the Prudhoe Bay unit and south of Tarn in the southwestern corner of the Kuparuk River unit.

In the Kuparuk River unit, as many as three ice drill pads are planned in each of two areas: Cairn (some three miles south of Tarn) and Meltwater North (some three miles south of Cairn).

“At each of the Cairn and Meltwater North areas,” ARCO told the state in plans submitted in early October, “plans include up to six reservoir penetrations (three wells and three sidetracks) and there ice drill pads.”

ARCO said that a drilling rig is expected to move to the first exploration site in late January with the first well planned to spud around Feb. 2, 2000.

A proposed time table for the Meltwater North wells shows the first well beginning Feb. 2, the second March 16 and the third March 31.

Construction is planned during January, drilling February through May. Vertical seismic profiles may be acquired; as many as three vibroseis trucks could be used.

Northwest Eileen also target

ARCO has also submitted winter exploration plans to the state for one appraisal well and one exploration well in the Northwest Eileen area in the western portion of the Prudhoe Bay unit.

Each well will be drilled from an ice pad accessed by a short ice road spur off of existing North Slope gravel roads.

ARCO said two reservoir penetrations -- one well and one sidetrack -- are possible at each location.

Work would begin Dec. 1 and continue until spring breakup.

ARCO Alaska plans to keep two seismic crews busy shooting seismic

Western Geophysical Co. has filed with the state to run five seismic surveys for ARCO Alaska Inc. on the North Slope between Nov. 15 and May 31.

The company said it expects to have two crews working and to shoot 500-1,000 square miles per crew of two- and three-dimensional seismic.

All of the individual programs are described as 3-D seismic, and include: Aurora, some 200 square miles northwest of Deadhorse; Fiord, some 450 square miles north of Nuiqsut and including offshore in Harrison Bay and the Beaufort Sea; Grizzly, some 357 square miles south-southwest of Nuiqsut; Power Line, some 386 square miles west of Nuiqsut; and S.E. Delta, some 450 square miles approximately centered at Nuiqsut.

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