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Image courtesy of AWE Limited.

Australia’s AWE Limited brought its Pateke-4H development well in offshore New Zealand online Tuesday after successfully installing a subsea tie-back connecting the well to its Tui fields. 

“The Pateke-4H well has been brought onto production and flow testing is under way to determine the optimal well settings,” AWE said.

The well recorded an initial unstabilized flow rate of 34,000 barrels of oil per day at 67 percent choke with a 48 percent water cut, in line with field modelling.

The company is planning to test various facility parameters, including choke settings, before establishing a lower stabilized flow rate for long term production.

AWE expects oil production from the well to decline relative to the increasing water cut in the well after the lower flow rate is established.

The project involved the installation of 4,304 feet  of flexible flow line, a gas lift umbilical and production manifold, integrated controls and ancillary equipment in water depths of about 406 feet.

All infrastructure was successfully tested and commissioned prior to starting production.

“The Pateke-4H project was completed with no safety or environmental incidents and initial production from the well is in line with expectations,” AWE said.

The Tui area oil fields include the Tui, Amokura and Pateke fields, located 31 miles off the coast of Taranaki, New Zealand in the AWE operated PMP 38158.

The Tui area oil fields and the Umuroa FPSO vessel were shut in for the duration of the tie back project.

During the shut-in period, a planned program of facility inspections and maintenance was conducted.

AWE is the operator of the Tui area joint venture with a 57.5 percent stake.

New Zealand Oil and Gas holds a 27.5 percent interest and Australia-based based Pan Pacific holds a 15 percent interest.

“The Pateke-4H development well is performing as expected and will boost near-term production and cash flow without additional operating costs,” AWE managing director Bruce Clement said.