Oil and natural gas explorer and producer Hyperdynamics Corporation has encountered oil at the Sabu-1 exploration well on its concession offshore Guinea-Conakry.

According to the company, the well was drilled to a planned total depth of 11,844ft in a water depth of 2,329ft and encountered oil shows while drilling the targeted Upper Cretaceous section.

Results of real-time hydrocarbon chromatograph measurements and Schlumberger petrophysical wire line analysis justified collection of down hole fluid samples.

These samples, together with sidewall cores taken, will be sent to Core Lab for analysis.

Hyperdynamics president and CEO Ray Leonard said, "The Sabu-1 results provide evidence that hydrocarbon generation has taken place in the basin and enhances the prospectivity of our 9,650-square-mile concession, one of the largest in West Africa."

"The oil and sandstone reservoirs encountered in the Santonian and Turonian age sediments in the well are particularly encouraging in the development of the turbidite fan plays further down dip on the concession," said Leonard.

The Jasper Explorer rig used in the drilling of the Sabu-1 well will be released following demobilisation.

Sabu-1 is the first exploration well drilled by Hyperdynamics in its Guinea concession and the first deep water test in the offshore Guinea basin.

The company completed acquisition of the 4,000km² 3D seismic programme in the deeper water portion of its concession offshore Guinea, which is currently being processed.

The firm operates the Guinea concession with a 77% interest and Scotland-based Dana Petroleum holds the remaining 23% stake.