Recent Developments on the North West Shelf - an Operator's perspective
Neil B. Thompson
Woodside is the operator of the North West Shelf Project, Australia's biggest ever resource undertaking (participants - Woodside, BHP, BP, Chevron, MIMI, Shell). Major gas and condensate discoveries in the early 1970s at North Rankin, Goodwyn and Angel saw the birth of the project. The delivery of natural gas to Western Australia commenced in 1984 over a 1500km onshore pipeline, with export of LNG to eight power and gas utilities in Japan, commencing in 1989. The project delivered its 500th LNG cargo in 1995. The North Rankin and Goodwyn facilities are world class. North Rankin A is one of the biggest gas production platforms in the world, with a production capacity of more than 1800 MMscf/d. North Rankin A lies offshore in 130m of water and is connected via a 135km pipel ne to the Burrup Peninsula LNG plant and gas facility, near Dampier, Western Australia. Goodwyn A has a production capacity of over 800 MMscf/d and up to 130,000 b/d condensate. Condensate and gas are exported to North Rankin A via a 23km subsea pipeline. The Goodwyn A platform was commissioned in February, 1995. Oil production from the nearby Wanaea and Cossack fields, discovered in 1989, is planned to commence in November, 1995 at 100,000 b/d. Production is via subsea well completions tied back to an FPSO facility located over Wanaea. Woodside is actively exploring to increase reserves. A 3D seismic programme covering some 27202 km is being used to identify further oil and gas prospects. The Perseus-1 well, drilled in 1995 based on the 3D data, discovered a major gas accumulation in the graben between North Rankin and Goodwyn.
Woodside is also the operator for permit AC/P8 in the Timor Sea (participants - Woodside, BHP, Shell). A 7702 km 3D seismic survey was recently acquired to follow up the exciting Laminaria-1 oil discovery. Laminaria is located in 350m of water, and some 500km northwest from Darwin. These recent discoveries combined with the commissioning of existing fields, signals a new phase of major growth for Woodside. A commitment to technology and the integration of the disciplines of engineering and geology has played a major role in the recent success.
AAPG Search and Discover Article #91019©1996 AAPG Convention and Exhibition 19-22 May 1996, San Diego, California