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    Rosneft Drills Stratigraphic Wells in Kara Sea


Rather than targeting oil and gas reservoirs, Rosneft collected core rock samples.

by: Joe Murphy

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Rosneft Drills Stratigraphic Wells in Kara Sea

Russia's Rosneft has drilled eight stratigraphic wells in the north of the Kara Sea, it said on November 26, to improve its knowledge of the geological structure and oil and gas potential of the area.

The wells were sunk using the domestic Bavenit drilling vessel to depths of 90 m and mark the first of their kind in the region and the northernmost on the Russian shelf. Unlike conventional exploration wells, which Rosneft has drilled in the Kara Sea before, stratigraphic wells are not aimed at striking oil and gas but at collecting core rock samples to improve general understanding of formations. Rosneft collected some 6.5 metric tons of samples from the wells, it said.

Rosneft made the Pobeda oil discovery in September 2014 with US partner ExxonMobil, which was forced to exit the project later because of US sanctions. The company estimated at the time that it had found 900mn barrels of oil. Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin told Russian president Vladimir Putin in August that the producer was drilling two more wells near Pobeda using two rigs.

State gas supplier Gazprom has also enjoyed some exploration success in the Kara Sea, most recently at the Leningradskoye field. But the development of most will probably have to wait until prices rise.