Wintershall Dea and its partners Total Austral, subsidiary of TotalEnergies in Argentina (operator), and Pan American Energy have commenced development drilling at the Fénix field, around 60 kilometres off the coast of Tierra del Fuego. 

Noble’s jack-up drilling rig Regina Allen has been deployed to start the Fénix development drilling programme. The rig is temporarily located next to the new Fénix production platform, installed beginning of the year. Three development wells are planned to be drilled, completed and put on production over the next months. Production is then planned to be evacuated via a 24-inch subsea multiphase line to the existing Vega Pléyade platform at 35 kilometres distance from Fénix, and from there to the Rio Cullen facilities at shore. 

“After the successful installation of the production platform in February and extensive and detailed preparation work for the drilling campaign over recent months, we are delighted to commence the next stage in the development of Fénix. We are well on track to bring this key energy project into production in Q4 this year”, says Manfred Boeckmann, Managing Director of Wintershall Dea Argentina. “The team is looking forward to a successful drilling campaign”, he adds.   

Fénix is the largest natural gas field currently being developed off the Argentine coast. Fénix represents a material pillar for the growing domestic gas production, with its natural gas volumes planned to contribute for more than 15 years to Argentina’s long-term energy supply. The gas field is expected to play a significant role in the country’s energy matrix and to offset imports, with a planned peak production of around 10 million cubic metres of gas per day. The total investment of the consortium in the Fénix development amounts to approximately 700 million US dollars.

Fénix is the next gas field to be brought on stream as part of the world’s southernmost gas production concession CMA-1 in which Wintershall Dea and Total Austral (operator) each hold a 37.5 per cent share while Pan American Energy holds the remaining 25 per cent. Currently, the four main gas fields Cañadón Alfa, Aries, Carina and Vega Pléyade in CMA-1 are producing and already supply 15 per cent of Argentina’s natural gas production.