TRANSERV Energy has spudded the first of two wells as part of a two-well drilling program aimed at unlocking the potential value in the onshore Warro gas field, Western Australia.

Drilled by the Enerdrill rig 3, the Warro 5 well is expected to take 28 days to reach the planned total depth of 4,250 metres.

In the August announcement, Transerv said the well was at 1,599 metres and running a 13 3/8 inch casing.

Upon reaching total depth, the well will be cased from surface to total depth and suspended at the end of drilling operations.

Transerv will then drill Warro 6 before undertaking reservoir stimulation and testing of both wells.

Warro 3D seismic data was used to select the location of Warro 5 and the well will penetrate the reservoir section in the substantial portion of the field that the 3D shows is devoid of deep-seated faulting.

Transerv said an independent study by a US-based team of tight gas experts found this deep-seated faulting was likely to be the source of the water encountered in the Warro 3 and Warro 4 wells.

The study indicated that Warro contains a substantial volume of gas with the potential to flow at high rates, the company said.

Transerv said wells may be capable of delivering between 4 billion and 10 billion cubic feet of gas each with existing water results and more if the water can be reduced or avoided by drilling away from the faults.

In addition, the study confirmed an in-place gas resource of between 8 trillion to 10 trillion cubic feet with potentially 3 trillion to 4 trillion cubic feet recoverable if appropriate reservoir stimulation is successfully carried out.

Warro 5 and Warro 6 are aimed at demonstrating the ability of wells in the Warro field to f low gas at commercial rates and avoid the issues associated with excessive water in Warro 3 and Warro 4.

Alcoa of Australia are funding the drilling of Warro 5 and Warro 6, and at no cost to Transerv.

Under this agreement, Alco can earn up to a 65 per cent interest in the field by spending $100 million.

To date, Alcoa has invested approximately $50 million and the wells are expected to cost a further $30 million to $40 million, depending on results, Transerv said.

Located 200 kilometres north of Perth, the Warro field is 30 kilometres from the DBNG and Parmelia pipelines.