• Approval of major expansion at Atlantis field supports strategy of growing
advantaged oil production around existing production hubs.
• Recent BP breakthrough in seismic imaging identifies 1 billion barrels of
additional oil in place at Thunder Horse field.
• New discoveries near Na Kika platform provide additional development
• BP expects to grow net Gulf production to around 400,000 boe/d in the next
HOUSTON – BP announced today that it has approved a major expansion at the
Atlantis field in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and has also identified significant additional
oil resources that could create further development opportunities around the
production hubs it operates in the region.
The $1.3 billion Atlantis Phase 3 development is the latest example of BP’s strategy
of growing advantaged oil production through its existing production facilities in the
Gulf. The approval for this latest development comes after recent BP breakthroughs
in advanced seismic imaging and reservoir characterization revealed an additional
400 million barrels of oil in place at the Atlantis field.
Application of the same technology and analysis has now identified an additional 1
billion barrels of oil in place at the Thunder Horse field. Elsewhere, two new
discoveries near the Na Kika production facility could provide further tie-back
“BP’s Gulf of Mexico business is key to our strategy of growing production of
advantaged high-margin oil. We are building on our world-class position, upgrading
the resources at our fields through technology, productivity and exploration
success,” said Bernard Looney, BP’s Upstream chief executive.
“And these fields are still young – only 12% of the hydrocarbons in place across our
Gulf portfolio have been produced so far. We can see many opportunities for further
development, offering the potential to continue to create significant value through
the middle of the next decade and beyond.“
BP approves Atlantis expansion
Atlantis Phase 3 will include the construction of a new subsea production system
from eight new wells that will be tied into the current platform, 150 miles south of
New Orleans. Scheduled to come onstream in 2020, the project is expected to
boost production at the platform by an estimated 38,000 barrels of oil equivalent a
day (boe/d) gross at its peak. It will also access the eastern area of the field where
the advanced imaging and reservoir characterization identified additional oil in place.
“Atlantis Phase 3 shows how our latest technologies and digital techniques create
real value – identifying opportunities, driving efficiencies and enabling the delivery of
major projects. Developments like this are building an exciting future for our
business in the Gulf,” said Starlee Sykes, BP’s regional president for the Gulf of
Mexico and Canada.
Advanced seismic imaging boosts Thunder Horse resources
The proprietary algorithms developed by BP enhance a seismic imaging technique
known as Full Waveform Inversion (FWI), allowing seismic data that would have
previously taken a year to analyze to be processed in only a few weeks. Application
of this technology and reservoir characterization has now identified a further 1 billion
barrels of oil in place at the Thunder Horse field.
BP’s leadership in seismic acquisition and imaging is a result of sustained
investment in technology and high-performance computing. Following a successful
field trial at the Mad Dog field, further advanced seismic imaging with ocean bottom
nodes and BP’s proprietary Wolfspar seismic acquisition source is being planned for
Thunder Horse and Atlantis to better understand the reservoirs. Wolfspar uses ultralow frequencies during seismic surveys, allowing geophysicists to see deeper below
salt layers and enabling better planning of where to drill wells.
Discoveries and new potential near Na Kika
BP is also announcing two oil discoveries in the Gulf of Mexico, at the Manuel and
Nearly Headless Nick prospects.
The Manuel discovery is located on Mississippi Canyon block 520, east of the BPoperated Na Kika platform. The well encountered oil pay in high-quality Miocene
sandstone reservoirs. BP is expecting to develop these reservoirs via subsea tieback
to the Na Kika platform. BP’s partner in the Manuel discovery is Shell, which holds a
50 percent working interest.
BP also has a stake in the Nearly Headless Nick discovery located on Mississippi
Canyon block 387, operated by LLOG. The well encountered oil pay in high-quality
Miocene sandstone reservoirs and is expected to be tied back to the nearby LLOGoperated Delta House facility. BP’s partners in the Nearly Headless Nick discovery
include LLOG, Kosmos Energy Ltd, and Ridgewood Energy. BP holds a 20.25
percent working interest.
Growing production in the Gulf of Mexico
Over the last five years, BP’s net production in the Gulf of Mexico has increased by
more than 60 percent, rising from less than 200,000 boe/d in 2013 to more than
300,000 boe/d today. BP is currently the top oil producer in the Gulf and anticipates
its production growing to around 400,000 boe/d through the middle of the next
The growth will be supported by recent project startups, including Thunder Horse
Northwest and Thunder Horse South expansions and the Thunder Horse Water
Injection project, as well as the addition of a second platform (Argos) at the Mad
Dog field, which is on budget and on schedule to come online in late 2021.
Future potential developments at BP’s offshore fields in the Gulf include Atlantis
Phase 4 and 5, further developments at Thunder Horse, Na Kika subsea tiebacks
and Mad Dog field extensions.
BP Press Office, Houston: firstname.lastname@example.org, +1 281 366 4463.