Anadarko’s Bossier Gas Play: A Sleeping Giant in a Mature Basin
James J. Emme, Robert W. Stancil, 2005. "Anadarko’s Bossier Gas Play: A Sleeping Giant in a Mature Basin", Discoverers of the 20th Century: Perfecting the Search, Charles A. Sternbach, Marlan W. Downey, Gerald M. Friedman
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The Bossier Sand Play in the “mature” East Texas basin has emerged as one of the premier basin-center gas plays in the onshore U.S. For almost 25 years, the Jurassic Bossier Sands were viewed as “bail out” zones in wells drilled for deeper targets in the Hay-nesville/Cotton Valley and Smackover Limestones. Prior to 1995, the average Bossier completion at 11,500 ft (3505 m) produced about 0.9 bcf of gas and was considered uneconomic as a primary objective. In 1996, following a failed Cotton Valley Limestone exploration program, Anadarko recognized the ingredients for significant gas reserves in the Bossier Sands. Favorable geologic conditions included a petroleum system with juxtaposed reservoir, source, and seal over a broad, overpressured region. Economic hurdles included high drilling and completion costs for relatively low-rate gas production in “permeability-challenged” sandstones. Successive operational/cost improvements led to economically attractive results, even in a $2/mcf gas price environment. Average Bossier wells now take 55 days from spud to first sales with initial rates of 3-5 mmcfd gas/day and reserves of 2.4-3 bcf of gas. Exceptional wells produce up to 50 mmcf gas/day with 10 bcf of gas reserves. As of August 2001, Anadarko’s East Texas Bossier production was in excess of 300 mmcf gas/day with proven reserves for the Dew/Mimms Creek Field of over 1.1 tcf of gas (“giant field" status). Ultimately, the Bossier Gas Play is expected to yield multi-tcf reserves from developing trends throughout East Texas and north Louisiana. Anadarko’s Bossier success can be tied to these key factors: 1) recognition of the resource potential, 2) improvements in drilling/completion costs and techniques, 3) large acreage position, and 4) integration of midstream/marketing strategies. North American onshore basins have many more “sleeping giants” yet to be awakened by innovative explorers who recognize their potential!
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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.