Invictus Energy starts phase two of oil, gas exploration

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INVICTUS Energy, the Australia-headquartered firm scouting for oil and gas in Zimbabwe’s Cabora Bassa Basin region in Muzarabani, has commenced Mukuyu-2 appraisal well and phase 2 exploration programme.

Appraisal wells are additional wells drilled after discovery, to confirm the size of a hydrocarbon deposit. They are normally used to run buildup tests, drill stem tests, top and bottom of formation, gather core or fluid samples or other evaluations.

In February, the company announced the intent to raise US$6,733 million through a private placement to finance preparations for Mukuyu-2 appraisal well and Phase 2 exploration programme.

The drilling of the second well within the firm’s prospective area in the Cabora Bassa Basin in Mbire follows post well analysis of the Mukuyu-1 prospect, which showed strong evidence of hydrocarbon deposits.

Results from drilling at Mukuyu one showed strong evidence for petroleum deposits, despite the technical glitches the firm experienced regarding extracting fluid sample to fulfil regulatory requirements necessary to declare a commercial discovery.

Commercial discovery of hydrocarbons in Mbire/Muzarabani would give Zimbabwe extra sources of energy and open avenues for massive economic growth and development in line with the aspirations of the Second Republic to achieve an upper middle-income society by 2030.

In an update for the quarter ended March 31, 2023 released last week, Invictus said: “During the quarter, Invictus commenced preparations for the Mukuyu-2 appraisal well and Phase 2 exploration campaign at its 80 per cent-owned and operated Cabora Bassa project in Zimbabwe.

“The tendering process commenced during the quarter for minor additional long leads and well services for the Mukuyu-2 well, which is anticipated to spud in early Q3 2023.”

The Australian company said the well will target multiple hydrocarbon (gas-condensate and potentially light oil) bearing intervals encountered in the Mukuyu-1 well in the Upper Angwa and Pebbly Arkose geological formations, with the aim of confirming a gas-condensate discovery.

As such Mukuyu-2 will also test additional prospectivity in the firm’s undrilled deeper geological formations, including Upper Angwa, which were not penetrated in the Mukuyu-1 campaign, providing further upside potential.

“It will also aim to test the Post Dande horizon away from the major east-west fault on the southern flank.

“The design of Mukuyu-2 will allow for flow testing to confirm reservoir deliverability and connectivity following a successful discovery,” said Invictus.

The appraisal well will be drilled using the Romania firm Exalo Rig 202, which remained warm stacked at the Mukuyu-1 wellsite following the completion of operations at the start of the quarter. In the early 1990s, a French-based company, Mobil carried out initial seismic surveys but decided not to follow it up.

But using contemporary data processing techniques, Invictus reprocessed the data and has obtained irresistible evidence that the underlying geological formations had the domes and traps that could indicate oil and gas in Muzarabani.