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    Serica brings third Rhum well online off UK


R3 was first drilled by former operator BP in 2005 but was never put into production.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Serica brings third Rhum well online off UK

London-listed Serica Energy said on September 2 it had brought online a third well at the Rhum gas field in the UK North Sea, boosting the project's flow rate from 26,000 to 34,000 barrels of oil equivalent/day.

The R3 well started production on August 23 and has been flowing at an average rate of over 190mn ft3/day and 1,400 barrels/day of condensate, Serica said in an operations update.

R3 was drilled by former operator BP in 2005 but was never put into production. Serica, which assumed control of Rhum and other fields through a series of acquisitions in 2019, began intervention work at the well in October, using Awilco Drilling's WilPhoenix semi-submersible. Serica had hoped to launch R3 sooner but encountered difficulties with weather conditions and a technical problem. 

"Despite the challenges we faced, the additional production and accelerated cash flows will lead to a rapid payback on the capital invested, particularly as we are immediately benefitting from the current high gas prices," Serica CEO Mitch Flegg commented. "Not only will this well enable enhanced production rates from the field, but it will also provide redundancy to help maintain future production."

European gas prices have soared in recent months on rising demand and constrained supply, with the contract for September supply at the Dutch TTF hub recently exceeding $600/'000 m3.

Serica noted that its next gas project Columbus was still on track to start up in the fourth quarter. It test-flowed the field's first well in mid-July.