Gazprom Neft has commissioned two new production wells at its Prirazlomnoye field, bringing the total number of wells currently in operation at the Prirazlomnaya platform, currently the only oil production project on the Russian Arctic Shelf, to 10: six production wells, two injection wells, and one absorption well.
The total length of the two new wells is over eight kilometers. One of the new wells is equipped with a domestically produced electronic submersible pump — the first instance of such high-tech equipment being used on the Russian Arctic Shelf. Initial operation of the new facility has, already, seen production at that well reach 1,760 tons per day.
The Prirazlomnaya platform is equipped with technology to prevent any ingress of production of drilling waste into the sea. The project is being implemented on the basis of “zero emissions” with waste either re-injected into the strata or transported onshore for further recycling. All wellheads are located within the platform, the base of which then acts as a buffer between the well and the open sea.
The Prirazlomnoye oil field is the world’s first project involving oil extraction on the Arctic shelf using a stationary platform. It is located 55 kilometers (34 miles) from shore at water depths of 20 meters (66 feet). Recoverable reserves are in the order of 70 million tons. First oil was shipped from the field in April 2014, and peak production of five million tons is planned for about 2020.
The Russian designed and built Prirazlomnaya rig is anchored to the seabed. The rig has walls some three meters thick that separate drilling activities from the surrounding environment.
The area experiences severe Arctic conditions with wind and sub-zero temperatures prevailing for almost five months of the year, ice cover from November to May and 24-hour darkness for almost two months.
Development of the Prirazlomnoye field in the Pechora Sea envisages the commissioning of 32 wells, in total.
More Arctic offshore development is expected in the future. Rosneft plans seismic surveys of the Laptev and East Siberian Seas between 2017 and 2020. In 2016, the Russian government allocated about three billion rubles ($50.3 million) from the federal budget for Arctic shelf exploration.