THE SIX wells drilled on the Bauer oilfield, operated by Beach Energy, are expected to start production in the third quarter of 2015, with all having been cased and suspended as future oil producers.

The wells are located within PPL 253, in PEL 91, in the South Australian portion of the Cooper basin – in a permit area 60 per cent owned by Drillsearch but operated by Beach.

They were drilled from October to December using a pad drilling method, eliminating the need to re-mobilise the Ensign 965 drilling rig for four wells.

“A ‘sideways walk’ of the rig achieves savings in terms of footprint, drilling time and costs,” Drillsearch said in its November drilling report.

The most recently drilled well, Bauer 18, hit its targeted top Manur sandstone 0.7 metres higher than had been predicted – finding 6.6 metres of oil pay.

The well later hit another 4.2 metre oil bearing gross interval during the drilling process.

Following the completion of the Bauer 18 well, Beach moved the rig to spud the Hanson 2 well development well on 29 December, reaching total depth before the end of the year.

“The well is currently being evaluated with initial indications of an eight metre gross oil column in the McKinlay Member and Namur Sandstone reservoirs,” Beach said in its December monthly drilling report.

The Ensign 930 rig that drilled Bauer 15 has moved to the Maupetuis 1 gas exploration well located in PEL 106.

Beach managing director Reg Nelson said the Bauer field was continuing to deliver upside results for the company.

“To have development wells delivering these results over and above what is built into our guidance is great news,” he said.

“Supporting existing production on the Western Flank is not just about exploration and appraisal, but just as importantly about strategically located development wells.”