Austin strikes oil and gas at Pathfinder

by on September 28, 2012 4:31 am BST

The Australia-listed company has completed the drilling of a 1249.7-metre horizontal leg at the Pathfinder C11-12 No.1 well, which has a total measured depth of about 3008 metres.

Austin said hydrocarbon shows were encountered throughout  the drilling of the horizontal leg, which was drilled into the Niobrara shale formation.

The company, which holds an 85% interest in the Pathfinder project, is now preparing to complete and frac the well via a multi-stage hydraulic fracturing stimulation treatment by the end of next month.

Logging data, cutting analysis and pressure tests are expected to be used to design the fracking treatment.

Oil flow results were anticipated by November, Austin said.

Meanwhile, the company is imminently expecting a well at its 93.5%-owned Birch prospect in Texas to start producing oil.

The Birch-3 Schwartz/Galbreath well is continuing to flow back drilling fluids to the surface under natural pressure.

Austin said it preferred that the well expelled the 50,000 barrels of fluids used to drill the 4000-foot horizontal section naturally, rather than being lifted out by a pump, despite it taking more time.