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Map of Lukoil SL-5-11 (Image Courtesy of Lukoil

Lukoil has commenced exploratory drilling off the coast of Sierra Leone on the West African shelf.

They are using the 52,500-ton Eirik Raude semisubmersible drilling rig, which is operating in more than 2,000 m of water

The target depth of the Savannah well on Block SL-5-11 exceeds 4,700 m.

Block SL-5-11 covers an area of 4,022 square kilometers on the shelf and continental slope of the Atlantic Ocean in water from 100-3,300 meters deep. 2D and 3D seismic data was acquired on 1,500 square kilometers leading to the identification of several prospects, including Leon and Savanna. Geologically, the Block is confined to the Sierra Leone-Liberia basin where a number of sizable oil fields have recently been discovered.

Lukoil has 49% of the block; Nigeria’s Oranto has 30% and PanAtlantic, 21%.