American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018 - 121

SPECIAL REPORT: GULF OF MEXICO
an enormous help with conceiving of and
executing the Buckskin tieback plan.
"Anadarko has been absolutely wonderful
to work with. The cooperation with
Anadarko makes the project possible,"
he states, pointing out the LLOG also is
tying back its Crown and Anchor Miocene
joint-field development in the Viosca
Knoll area to the Anadarko-operated Marlin tension leg platform. Production at
Crown and Anchor is scheduled to commence within the next few months.
Some of the future production delivered
to the Lucius spar could eventually come
from Moccasin, a discovery in the area that
LLOG acquired through a federal lease
sale. "Moccasin and other projects in the
Keathley Canyon are part of our long-term
vision for the development," Fowler comments. "We expect projects in this area to
produce for a number of years and become
a key part of LLOG's portfolio."
Wood says Buckskin's recovery rates,
in general, are expected to be somewhat
low for a Lower Tertiary formation because
the reservoir's rock properties are not
quite as high in terms of porosity and
permeability as some of the other developments. Consequently, he says LLOG
plans to use riser-based gas lift on the
subsea wells to improve recovery and
optimize production rates.
"But we have done extensive analog
work prior to this project, which suggests
that the gas-lifted wells will compare favorably to wells in other Lower Tertiary
fields that are under production," he
points out.
Technical Challenges
LLOG's ability to transfer proven technology from the Miocene to the Lower
Tertiary does not mean Buckskin has
been without technical challenges, however. For starters, LLOG is modifying an
existing host platform that was not originally designed to accommodate Buckskin
production flows. "Any time you do a
brownfield project, there are absolute
challenges with that," Zimmermann states.
Wood adds that one of the major
drilling challenges is a large Oligoceneand Wilcox-rafted section at a relatively
shallow depth. "We have had to optimize
the drilling center location to successfully
work through that somewhat exotic 'super
salt,'" he says.
Another challenge is producing from
the Upper Wilcox in the "northern eye,"

where there is around 450 feet of net pay
and the gross interval can be upwards of
800 feet in total, Wood continues. Under
those conditions, maximizing production
and initial rates can be complex. He says
LLOG's solution is to again use proven
technology, completing three intervals
and commingling them through an intelligent smart-sleeve configuration.

A final issue was coming up with a
fracturing design that could address the
lower rock porosity and permeability, Wood
allows. "Fortunately, the tremendous amounts
of core data available allowed extensive
studies of fluid compatibility, proppant selection, and then frac design work that ensured we had the well productivity to fill
our capacity on Lucius," he says.

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APRIL 2018 121


http://www.leistritzcorp.com/pumps

American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018

Contents
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