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Image courtesy of Lion Energy.

Australia’s Lion Energy said Wednesday that it may have encountered a “significant” gas pay zone at its Lofin-2 appraisal well at Seram Island in eastern Indonesia.

The well, part of the Seram Non Bula production sharing contract, encountered the top of the primary objective Manusela formation limestone at 15,141 feet, about 1,132 feet deeper than the top Manusela formation found at the Lofin-1 discovery well.

The potential hydrocarbon column is at least 1,968 feet to the well’s current total depth, based on preliminary well data while drilling.

The Manusela formation is described as predominantly limestone, with nil-to-­poor visual porosity.

The Seram PSC is currently preparing to cut an 59 foot core to gather rock data to assist in the evaluation of the well.

Only 5.6 foot of core, consisting of tight limestone, was recovered in the first coring attempt due to mechanical issues, Lion said.

Lofin-2 is being drilled to appraise the Lofin-­1 discovery made in 2012.

Lofin-1 flowed at a rate of 15.7 million standard cubic feet per day of gas and 171 barrels per day of oil/condensate from the fractured Manusela formation.

The objective of the well is to investigate the extent of the hydrocarbon column below the 525 feet delineated in Lofin-­1 that could not be drilled deeper due to engineering issues.

The Seram PSC is planning to recover the core and continue drilling to the planned total depth of 17,798 feet to evaluate the extent of the potential hydrocarbon column and whether an oil leg is present.

The well may be drilled to shallower total depth if there are no further indications of hydrocarbons or if a water contact is penetrated.

Some mud losses have been recorded while drilling indicating fractures are likely to be present in the interval, Lion said.

High connection gas and trip gas have also been recorded in the well.

Overall weak fluorescence shows continue to be recorded in the Manusela.

“While the presence of significant gas shows is encouraging we caution it is still too early to reach a conclusion as to the eventual outcome of the well,” Lion’s CEO Kim Morrison said.

Lion has a 2.5 percent interest in the Seram Non Bula PSC.

The PSC is operated by Indoensia-based CITIC Seram Energy with a 51 percent interest.

KUFPEC, a subsidary of the Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Company, holds a 30 percent interest and Kuwait-based Gulf Petroleum Investment Company holds a 16.5 percent interest.