Elixir completes Richcairn-1S well in Mongolia
Sydney-listed Elixir Energy has completed the Richcairn-1S exploration well in its 100% owned Nomgon IX coalbed methane (CBM) project in Mongolia, it said on September 17.
The well was drilled to 792 m and discovered 16 m of coal and 20 m of “highly” carbonaceous mudstone, as determined from wireline logs.
The rig will now move to a proximate up-dip step-out location, Richcairn-2S, which will spud in the next day or so. Further wells in what could be a "very extensive" coal-bearing sub-basin will follow over the balance of 2021 and beyond, the company said.
Richcairn 1S is the first of Elixir’s exploration wells to intersect coal purely from seismic identification. “This demonstrates the continuous improvements in the company’s exploration programme, from the ongoing gathering of data and the constant optimisation of exploration tools and analysis for the specific geology of the South Gobi basin,” Elixir said.
Future wells in this new sub-basin will seek to measure other key CBM characteristics such as gas content and permeability. Elixir’s last six wells have all intersected their coal targets and the company has therefore has decided to accelerate its drilling programme for the rest of 2021 by adding a third rig.
The Nomgon Central-1 core-hole has reached a total depth of 559 m and logged 65 m of coal. This well is gathering data to underpin the design of future production testing and various laboratory tests will follow in the months to come, the company said.
The next Nomgon sub-basin appraisal well – Nomgon 6 – will be spudded later this week. The company’s expanded seismic programme for this year is also due to begin soon. It is targeting the acquisition of another 300 km of 2D seismic data, in addition to the 220 km already acquired, processed and interpreted earlier this year.