Production from Statoil's Skinfaks/Rimfaks project in the North Sea started on 27 January. First oil will be from Rimfaks improved oil recovery (IOR).
In addition to IOR at the Rimfaks field, the project also marks the start of Skinfaks field production. All wells will be on stream in the course of autumn 2007 with both fields representing 12% of the total Gullfaks licence output.
"By combining Skinfaks development with several Rimfaks wells we've achieved an economic development of two satellites which individually would have been marginal," say Lars Christian Bacher, senior vice president for the Tampen business cluster.
"The development is an important measure for increasing oil recovery in the area. The project secures good exploitation of the Gullfaks area infrastructure, with small investments."
When all project wells are completed, Rimfaks IOR and Skinfaks production will represent around 35% of the Gullfaks licence's oil production via the Gullfaks C platform.
The Skinfaks field plan for development and operation (PDO) and the revised PDO for the Rimfaks field was approved in February 2005. Investments in the order of NOK 3.4 billion for the two fields have been made.
Recoverable reserves are estimated at around 62 million barrels of oil equivalent. The recovery ratio for Rimfaks will increase by 36-47% with Skinfaks/Rimfaks IOR.
Skinfaks, which was proven in 2002, comprises several smaller structures. The field was developed with a subsea production system tied in to existing xmas trees on the Gullfaks South satellite field.
Production from Rimfaks commenced in June 2000. This field was developed as a satellite with the wellstream tied back to the Gullfaks A platform. Field recovery will now be increased using several wells via tie-back to the Gullfaks C platform.
Statoil is operator for the Gullfaks licence with a 61% share. Other licensees are Petoro with 30% and Hydro (9%).