Tullow Oil has announced suspension of the Paipai-1 exploration well after unsuccessful tests on the initial fluids that had been found.The well, located in the Marsabit County, Block 10A, had been drilled to a total depth of 4,255 metres but no oil could be confirmed yet.
"Several attempts to sample the initial reservoir fluids were unsuccessful and the hydrocarbons encountered whilst drilling were not recovered to surface," said Tullow in a press statement.
Tullow said it had initially encountered light hydrocarbon shows while drilling a 55 metre thick gross sandstone interval, but the sandstone was overlain by a 200 metre thick source rock forming an effective regional top seal.
"The well has consequently been temporarily suspended pending agreement on future evaluation options," it said.Tullow has a 50 per cent operated interest in the Paipai-1 well, Block 10A. Africa Oil holds 30 per cent and Afren holds the remaining 20 per cent.
"We will now carefully evaluate all the data and review the available technical options, which include possible flow testing and reservoir stimulation," Angus McCoss, Exploration Director of Tullow Oil plc said.
"From a frontier exploration perspective, we can already conclude that this part of the Anza Basin has the makings of a viable Cretaceous hydrocarbon play,Consequently, we will also be reviewing the follow-up Cretaceous prospects," McCoss said.
Tullow will now move the rig to the South Lokichar Basin in Block 10BB and drill the Etuko prospect in the undrilled basin flank play. The move is expected to take three months.
This is part of accelerating its exploration activities in its oil campaign in the tertiary rift basins of Kenya and Ethiopia.In February, Tullow confirmed Twiga South -1 well in Turkana County had a total flow rate of 5,200 barrels of oil per day.
The company however said that it now requires to establish if the whole oil extraction venture is commercially viable before a decision can be reached on whether to commence production or not.
The flow testing on Ngamia-1A, Block 10BB, where four zones are planned to be tested is expected to commence this month and be complete by the end of May.