China Petroleum & Chemical (Sinopec) has made a new gas discovery in the first phase of the Bazhong field, with 30.55 billion cubic metres (bcm) of proven reserves of natural gas.

The Chinese oil and gas company has secured an official certification from the Ministry of Natural Resources, for the new discovery made in northeast Sichuan, China.

Sinopec said that the new discovery represents a significant breakthrough in its Project Deep Earth-Sichuan and Chongqing natural gas base.

Also, the new gas discovery would further establish the potential of the tight sandstone in the region, said the Chinese oil and gas company.

The Bazhong gas field marks Sinopec’s third Xujiahe formation tight sandstone gas field discovery in the region.

The company said that it has submitted a total of 154,747 million cubic metres of proven geological reserves of tight sandstone gas in the region.

A sandstone gas reserve with a burial depth of more than 4,500m is defined as an ultra-deep, tight sandstone gas reservoir.

The Chinese oil and gas company said that the burial depth of the Bazhong gas field ranges from 4,550 to 5,225m, which is a challenge for exploration and development.

Sinopec, in its statement, said: “Sinopec has innovated three types of high-quality reservoir and permeability development models to clarify natural gas enrichment and high-yield production models, established reservoir prediction technique sequences, and implemented enriched high-yield zones.

Sinopec will continue the geological evaluation and engineering process of the tight sandstone shale gas reserves in the Sichuan Basin to expand the scale of reserves in the Bazhong region.

In November last year, Sinopec announced a major shale gas discovery with a proven reserve of 145.968 bcm in the Sichuan Basin, in southwestern China.

The new Qijiang shale gas discovery was delivered by Sinopec Exploration Company and Sinopec Southwest Oil & Gas Company.

Sinopec found the field reserves in medium-deep and deep strata in a complex tectonic zone on the margin of the basin, the first for a shale gas field.

Due to the complex overlying strata, the project faced challenges including a significantly greater depth and variable ground stress, said the Chinese company.