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Zion Oil & Gas has ended field operations at its Elijah #3 well site within its 78,824 acre Asher-Menashe license in northern Israel.
In July 2012, Zion re-entered the existing wellbore of its temporarily suspended Elijah #3 well and acquired an electric wireline log suite that had not been acquired when the well was originally drilled in 2010. A formation evaluation log (an advanced petrophysical evaluation analysis) was then derived from the newly acquired log suite, and Zion subsequently obtained approximately 48 sidewall core samples from key zones in the previously drilled wellbore.
During the re-entry operations, Zion also obtained vertical seismic profile (VSP) data. Zion was assisted in this project by Baker Hughes, the Geophysical Institute of Israel, NuTech Energy Alliance, Core Labs, and Bedrock Petroleum Consultants.
A preliminary review of the NuTech Formation Evaluation Log indicates the presence of a series of carbonates over 607 m (2,000 ft) thick, with the possibility of interspersed zones of developed fair to good porosity and permeability with oil shows (up to a combined several hundred feet thick) at depths shallower than 2,850 m (9,350 ft). When the sidewall core samples were retrieved, dark brown hydrocarbon stains were noted on some sidewall core samples.
The core samples have been sent to Houston for further analysis, and both Baker Hughes and the Geophysical Institute of Israel are processing the VSP data. Zion estimates that the analysis of the core samples and the VSP processing and analysis will take at least one month.
Zion’s CEO, Richard Rinberg, said, “After successfully completing this exploratory work, initial indications are positive; however, much analysis needs to be carried out during the coming weeks and months.”
The company’s president and COO, Victor G. Carrillo, said, “We are excited about the potential of this relatively shallow, stacked carbonate with a possible Jurassic oil column in our Elijah #3 wellbore. The combination of old data and newly acquired geophysical and geological data represents the most extensive dataset Zion has ever had, as the company has never previously obtained VSP or sidewall core data. I believe this combination of data will give us a better subsurface image of the hydrocarbon potential in proximity to this wellbore.”
The primary purpose of the re-entry operation was to obtain additional geologic and geophysical data and to better understand the hydrocarbon potential of a zone through which Zion drilled while drilling the Elijah #3 well in late 2009 and early 2010. The Elijah #3 well, originally planned to drill to below 5,182 m (17,000 ft), to test both Triassic and Permian-aged geological formations, was temporarily suspended in 2010 after encountering technical issues at a total depth of approximately 3,353 m (11,000 ft). In the recently completed field operations, the rig arrived at the Elijah #3 well site on July 15 and was released by the company Aug. 8.