The history of gas exploration of Saudi Aramco goes back to the early exploration years in Saudi Arabia. In 1957, the first commercial non-associated gas field was discovered in the Permian Khuff Formation at the Dammam Dome structure. In 1971, the first of 5 giant Khuff gas fields comprising the overall greater Ghawar (Khuff) Gas field was discovered and became the foundation for significant non-associated gas reserves and production by Saudi Aramco. With the Khuff Formation becoming the dominant gas reservoir in Saudi Arabia, other exploration plays were also aggressively pursued. In 1994, a non-associated gas program was started to explore for non-associated gas, focusing on several plays including the Khuff, Permo-Carboniferous ‘Unayzah, and Devonian Jauf Formations. This program was initiated to fuel expansion in gas-based power generation, seawater desalination. and petrochemical industries. This non-associated gas program has been remarkably successful, having drilled a total of 28 exploration wells with an overall exploration success rate of 54%, resulting in 15 new gas fields, and having discovered in excess of 44 tcf of additional non-associated gas reserves at year-end 2001.
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Geoscients who believe that a study of history is extremely valuable will enjoy this volume. It contains case histories of both exploration triumphs and breakthrough concepts. Fascinating stories of early discoveries, landmark technologies, and modern innovation are told by authors with privileged glimpses into critical thought processes. The 17 papers in the book include: A history of oil production in California; Subtlety of the east Texas field; Methane from coalbeds; Giant gas fields of Saudi Arabia; and History of a new play–Thunder Horse discovery, deepwater Gulf of Mexico.