Royal Helium Ogema-2 well. Photo by Brian Zinchuk

 


SASKATOON – Royal Helium Ltd. announced on Dec. 8 it had found helium in its first targeted helium well drilled in southeast Saskatchewan, northeast of Ogema.

Until now, Royal had been concentrating on its properties east of Climax, Saskatchewan, where it has also found helium in what the company dubbed the “Nazare zone.”

Royal’s Ogema-1 well has hit helium in three separate zones including the potential extension to the Nazare zone identified 250 km west, at Climax.

Royal said it has successfully drill stem tested (DST) the Earlie zone showing, which returned 0.76 per cent helium over a thickness of 10 meters (33 feet) at its first helium well in southeastern Saskatchewan. A service rig has been mobilized to begin completions and production testing at Ogema-1 to assess longer-term flow rates and pressures in the Earlie zone, followed by Deadwood and Nazare once completions data is received from the Climax block. All results will be reported as they are received, the company said.

While Weil Group has produced helium to the west, near Mankota, that was from recompleted wells, not targeted wells.

Andrew Davidson, president and CEO of Royal said, “We are pleased to report Royal’s highest helium cuts to date over significant intervals from Saskatchewan’s first dedicated helium well drilled in southeastern Saskatchewan. Our initial indications are that Ogema-1 will be completed as a conventional helium well and we look forward to sharing results over the next few weeks. It is certainly noteworthy that we encountered what appears to be the Nazare zone, first discovered by Royal at Climax more than 250 km southwest of Ogema. The implications on the potential lateral extent of our helium bearing lands are significant and far exceeds our expectations. The end of our first drill year is setting up to be an exciting time for Royal and its shareholders with news flow from Ogema-1, preliminary test results from Ogema-2 and results from completions at Climax/Nazare all expected before year end.”

Ogema-1

The first well northeast of Ogema, Ogema-1, was drilled to 2,923 metres and encountered elevated helium shows in the Deadwood, Earlie, and Nazare sequences, according to Royal. DSTs of the Earlie interval provided samples that tested up to 0.76 per cent helium with reservoir pressures of 27 MPa and flow pressures up to 12.3 MPa. A service rig has been mobilized to clean, complete and production test this zone to assess longer-term flow rates and pressures. Results will be released as they are received.

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Royal said testing also appears to confirm a Nazare Zone at Ogema-1, with similar reservoir characteristics as the Nazare Zone at Climax, containing elevated concentrations of helium. Completion of this zone will follow on the results of the Nazare completion at Climax which are expected within the next two weeks.

Ogema-2

Drilling at Ogema-2 is wrapping up, with DST work happening on that well, according to Dean Nawata, vice president of corporate development.

Ogema-2 has reached its total depth, showing elevated helium cuts encountered during the drilling process, which were on par with helium readings during the drilling of Ogema-1, the company reported on Dec. 9. Elevated helium was recorded in two separate zones, including what appears to be the extension of aforementioned Nazare zone. Drill-stem testing of these two zones has commenced, and helium test results will be released once received from the lab.

Shayne Neigum, manager of operations for Royal, said, “The drilling that we have completed at Ogema has been a tremendous success.  While the goal of this program was clearly the same as the previous programs at Climax, different geological challenges were expected at Ogema. I am pleased to report that our advance planning was 100 per cent successful in anticipating these requirements, resulting in these wells being drilled faster and more efficiently than our initial Climax wells.”

Davidson said, “We have now identified elevated helium concentrations on both wells at Ogema. While we await the assay results from Agat Laboratories to confirm, we are confident that we have discovered a new helium field, southeast Saskatchewan’s first. Given our proximity to the major oil and gas hubs of Weyburn and Estevan, this will be another ideal location for helium development, and we look forward to publishing the results of our drill-stem testing program, once completed.”

The company is planning a further four wells before spring breakup. The first two are expected at Climax. For the last two, the company is considering either the Bengough of Griffin area, but that has not yet been decided.

 

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This is Part 6 in a series regarding helium development in Saskatchewan.

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 1: Saskatchewan announces Helium Action Plan, with goal of 10 per cent of global production by 2030

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 2: The role of incentives, and future revenue from helium development in Saskatchewan

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 3: Our place in global production and minimizing environmental impact

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 4: Helium development is entirely dependent on oil and gas expertise and services

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 5: Getting into the helium wildcatting game: Global Helium

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 6: Royal Helium finds helium in its first two targeted wells in southeast Saskatchewan

Helium in Saskatchewan, Part 7: Saskatchewan releases geological study into helium across southern part of province