Tiber oilfield
The Tiber Oil Field is a deepwater offshore oil field
Oil field
An oil field is a region with an abundance of oil wells extracting petroleum from below ground. Because the oil reservoirs typically extend over a large area, possibly several hundred kilometres across, full exploitation entails multiple wells scattered across the area...

 located in the Keathley Canyon
Keathley Canyon
Keathley Canyon is an undersea canyon in the in the United States Exclusive Economic Zone in the Gulf of Mexico.The Canyon is rich in oil fields. The major oilfields at the Keathley Canyon are Tiber, Kaskida, Lucius, and Buckskin. Many oil companies, including Chevron Corporation, BP, Anadarko...

 block 102 of the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 sector of the Gulf of Mexico
Gulf of Mexico
The Gulf of Mexico is a partially landlocked ocean basin largely surrounded by the North American continent and the island of Cuba. It is bounded on the northeast, north and northwest by the Gulf Coast of the United States, on the southwest and south by Mexico, and on the southeast by Cuba. In...

. The deepwater field (defined as water depth 1300 to 5000 ft (396.2 to 1,524 m),) was discovered in September 2009 and it is operated by BP
BP p.l.c. is a global oil and gas company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the third-largest energy company and fourth-largest company in the world measured by revenues and one of the six oil and gas "supermajors"...

. Described as a "giant" find, it is estimated to contain 4 Goilbbl of oil in place
Oil In Place
Oil in place is the total hydrocarbon content of an oil reservoir and is often abbreviated STOOIP, which stands for Stock Tank Original Oil In Place, or STOIIP for Stock Tank Oil Initially In Place, referring to the oil in place before the commencement of production...

. Although BP states it is too early to be sure of the size – a "huge" field is usually considered to contain 250 Moilbbl. It required the drilling of a 10685 m (35,055.8 ft) deep well under 1260 m (4,133.9 ft) of water, making it one of the deepest wells ever drilled at the time of discovery.


Tiber comprises multiple Lower Tertiary
The Paleogene is a geologic period and system that began 65.5 ± 0.3 and ended 23.03 ± 0.05 million years ago and comprises the first part of the Cenozoic Era...

 petroleum reservoirs located in Keathley Canyon block 102
Block (extraction of petroleum)
A block in the context of extraction of petroleum, signifies a sub-division of an underground reservoir for the purpose of administering a certain production allowable....

 about 250 mi (402.3 km) southeast of Houston and 300 mi (482.8 km) south west of New Orleans. Tiber is only the 18th Lower Tertiary well to date, and drilling in these formations is in its infancy. The oil from Tiber is light crude
Light crude oil
Light crude oil is liquid petroleum that has a low density and flows freely at room temperature. It has a low viscosity, low specific gravity and high API gravity due to the presence of a high proportion of light hydrocarbon fractions. It generally has a low wax content...

, and early estimates of recoverable reserves
Oil reserves
The total estimated amount of oil in an oil reservoir, including both producible and non-producible oil, is called oil in place. However, because of reservoir characteristics and limitations in petroleum extraction technologies, only a fraction of this oil can be brought to the surface, and it is...

 are around 20–30% recovery, suggesting figures of around 600 Moilbbl of reserves. Sources such as Bloomberg
Bloomberg L.P.
Bloomberg L.P. is an American privately held financial software, media, and data company. Bloomberg makes up one third of the $16 billion global financial data market with estimated revenue of $6.9 billion. Bloomberg L.P...

 suggest caution, warning that the find is technically complex and potentially could take 5–6 years to produce oil or be lower yield (5–15%) based on "rates talked about" at nearby Kaskida Oil Field
Kaskida Oil Field
The Kaskida Oil Field is an offshore oil field located in the Keathley Canyon block 292 of the United States sector of the Gulf of Mexico, south-west of New Orleans, Louisiana...

, BP's previous giant find (2006) 40 mi (64.4 km) away. The commercial prospects of the field have not yet been evaluated.


BP acquired the Outer Continental Shelf
Outer Continental Shelf
The Outer Continental Shelf is a peculiarity of the political geography of the United States and is the part of the internationally recognized continental shelf of the United States which does not fall under the jurisdictions of the individual U.S...

 lease of Keathley Canyon block 102
Block (extraction of petroleum)
A block in the context of extraction of petroleum, signifies a sub-division of an underground reservoir for the purpose of administering a certain production allowable....

 reference G25782, NOAA
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration , pronounced , like "noah", is a scientific agency within the United States Department of Commerce focused on the conditions of the oceans and the atmosphere...

 station 42872, on October 22, 2003, in Phase 2 of the Western Gulf of Mexico (WGOM/GOM) Sale 187. Lower Tertiary rock formations are some of the oldest and most technically challenging offshore rock formations currently drilled for oil, dating to between 23 and 65 million years ago. The plan of exploration was filed in June 2008.

Tiber was initially drilled by Transocean
Transocean Ltd. is one of the world's largest offshore drilling contractors. The company rents floating mobile drill rigs, along with the equipment and personnel for operations, to oil and gas companies at an average daily rate of US$282,700...

's fifth-generation dynamic positioned
Dynamic positioning
Dynamic positioning is a computer controlled system to automatically maintain a vessel's position and heading by using its own propellers and thrusters...

 semi-submersible oil rig
A semi-submersible is a specialised marine vessel with good stability and seakeeping characteristics. The semi-submersible vessel design is commonly used in a number of specific offshore roles such as for offshore drilling rigs, safety vessels, oil production platforms and heavy lift cranes.The...

, Deepwater Horizon
Deepwater Horizon
Deepwater Horizon was an ultra-deepwater, dynamically positioned, semi-submersible offshore oil drilling rig owned by Transocean. Built in 2001 in South Korea by Hyundai Heavy Industries, the rig was commissioned by R&B Falcon, which later became part of Transocean, registered in Majuro, Marshall...

, with exploratory drilling commencing around March 2009, slightly delayed from the planned date of September 2008. Much of the deeper gulf reserves are buried under salt accumulations thousands of feet thick, which present a problem for seismic exploration. BP had previously developed exploration techniques to bypass this difficulty. Oil was located at "multiple levels". The field was announced on September 2, 2009, and BP shares rose 3.7 percent on the news. With Tiber joining at least ten other successful Lower Tertiary explorations in the area, analysts viewed the announcement as a sign for optimism, and a harbinger of renewed interest in, and production from, the offshore Gulf of Mexico.

Exploitation on hold

Following the April 2010 destruction of the Deepwater Horizon while drilling the Macondo
Macondo Prospect
The Macondo Prospect is an oil and gas prospect in the United States Exclusive Economic Zone of the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Louisiana...

 well, and the resulting oil spill
Deepwater Horizon oil spill
The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico which flowed unabated for three months in 2010, and continues to leak fresh oil. It is the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry...

, all appraisal activities at 33 wells under exploration in the Gulf of Mexico, including Tiber, were placed on hold. At least two rigs that might otherwise have been used for developing Tiber are also in use on the relief well
Relief well
A relief well is a well drilled to intersect an oil or gas well that has experienced a blowout. Specialized liquid, such as heavy drilling mud followed by cement, can then be pumped down the relief well in order to stop the flow from the reservoir in the damaged well.The first use of a relief well...

s for the ruptured well.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.