AAPG GEO 2010 Middle East
Geoscience Conference & Exhibition
Innovative Geoscience Solutions – Meeting Hydrocarbon Demand in Changing Times
March 7-10, 2010 – Manama, Bahrain
“Brighter than the Moon” - Illuminating the Hydrocarbon Prospectivity in the South Rub' Al Khali Basin
(1) South Rub Al Khali Company Ltd, Al-Khobar, Saudi Arabia.
The South Rub Al-Khali Company Ltd is an Incorporated Joint Venture between Shell Saudi Ventures Limited (50%) and Saudi Arabian Oil Company (50%) and was set up in order to explore for non-associated gas in the South Rub ‘al Khali Basin as part of the Natural Gas Initiative in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
In order to achieve its objectives within the timeframe of the First Exploration Period, a play-based rather than prospect-based exploration strategy had been devised during the start-up of the Venture to maximise the chances of identifying working hydrocarbon systems and to optimally position the Company for a Second Exploration Period.
This encompassed a two pronged approach pursuing pre-Khuff Formation sweet gas prospectivity in SRAK’s Contract Area 2 in Southwest Saudi Arabia and Khuff and Arab Formation sour gas prospectivity in SRAK’s Contract Area 1 in Southeast Saudi Arabia. A concerted Technology effort was made to help polarize drilling opportunities.
As SRAK’s First Exploration Period is drawing to a close in mid-2010, this paper will summarise the exploration results, review how the exploration strategy evolved through time in response to early exploration results and distill learnings applicable to similar frontier exploration ventures elsewhere.