Equinor and its partners Ineos E&P and Faroe Petroleum have discovered oil and gas in the exploration well 6507/3-13 Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture in the Norwegian Sea.

Drilling of the well in production licence 159B started on 27 April around 14km south-west of the Norne field.

The well had an upper drilling target containing two million to 12 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMboe) of gas and a lower target with an estimated volume of one million to 48 million barrels of recoverable oil equivalent. Initially, the well was drilled to a depth of 2,800m to the first target Snadd Outer Outer, leading to the discovery of gas.

Later, it was drilled down to 3,200m to the second target, Black Vulture, discovering oil. Prior to making further delineation, the well volume totals three MMBoe to 60 MMboe.

Equinor Norway and UK exploration senior vice-president Nick Ashton said: “The volumes are broadly estimated, and operational challenges prevented side-tracking. We are evaluating both the time and place for further delineation to give us more accurate volume estimates.

“The deepest target is following up the Cape Vulture discovery of 2017, offering further opportunities on the Nordland Ridge, and we are very happy about today’s discovery.”

The 6507/3-13 is the fourth exploration well in production licence 159B and was terminated in the Lyr formation from the Early Cretaceous Age.

The Snadd Outer Outer/Black Vulture well, which has now been plugged and abandoned, was drilled using the Transocean Spitsbergen rig. The rig is currently moving to production licence 502 for drilling the exploration well Klaff in the North Sea, operated by Equinor.