The Aegir deepwater construction vessel installed the risers in the field. Credit: Heerema Marine Contractors.
The Lucius oil field produced first oil in January 2015. Credit: Oil and Gas Photographer / Shutterstock.
The oil from the Lucius field is exported to the South Marsh Island (SMI). Credit: Vismar UK / Shutterstock.

The Lucius oil field is located in the Keathley Canyon block in the Gulf of Mexico. Anadarko Petroleum operates the field with a 23.828% working interest.

Co-owners include Freeport McMoRan (25.123%), Exxon Mobil (20.94%), Petroleo Brasileiro (11.5%), Eni Petroleum (8.5%), and Inpex (10.107%).

Lucius is a deepwater field containing high-quality crude oil and associated gas. Active drilling at the field began in 2012 and the first oil was produced in January 2015, with development costing approximately $2bn.

Lucius oil field location

The Lucius structure is spread over parts of Keathley Canyon blocks 874, 875, 918 and 919, with a three-way closure against a salt barrier.

Anadarko, Exxon Mobil and other co-owners of the field entered a unitisation agreement in July 2011 to develop the Lucius oil field. This agreement integrates the portions of Keathley Canyon blocks 874, 875, 918, and 919.

Discovery of Lucius deepwater field

The Lucius field was discovered in December 2009 using the Ensco 8500 semi-submersible rig. The discovery well was drilled to a depth of 20,000ft in approximately 7,100ft of water.

It encountered 200ft of net pay in subsalt Pilocene and Miocene sands of Keathley Canyon block 875. High-quality crude oil of 29º API was encountered during the discovery drilling.

An up-dip sidetrack appraisal well was drilled 3,200ft south of the discovery well in the next month to confirm the results. The appraisal well encountered 600ft of net pay with high-quality oil and associated gas-condensate. It was drilled to around 20,600ft depth in 7,100ft of water.

An extended well test was performed at the discovery to confirm the flow rates and reservoir characteristics.

Lucius oil reserves

Lucius contains thick reservoir sands with good porosity and permeability. It is estimated to contain reserves of more than 300 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Field development of Lucius deepwater project

The development of the Lucius deepwater project was approved by Anadarko and partners in December 2011. It involves six subsea production wells tied back to a moored production handling spar that is connected to the shore through dedicated oil and gas pipelines.

Lucius floating production facility

Lucius produces oil and gas through a truss spar floating production facility. The spar is 605ft-long and 110ft in diameter. It is installed in 7,100ft of water and has a nameplate capacity of 80,000 barrels of oil a day (BOPD) and 450 million cubic feet of gas a day (mcf/d).

Pipeline for exportation of Lucius oil and contracts awarded

Oil produced by the Lucius spar is exported to the South Marsh Island (SMI) Area Block 205 Platform by an 18in diameter pipeline. The pipeline was laid in three sections by Cronus Technology.

The south section is a 71-mile long, newly laid pipe in 7,025ft to 5,300ft of water depth. It has two inline wye assemblies to enable future tie-ins.

The mid-section is an existing 48 miles-long Phoenix pipeline in 5,300ft to 2,395ft of water depth. The north section is 26 miles-long, newly laid in water depths ranging between 2,395ft and 445ft.

Heerema Marine Contractor’s Aegir vessel performed the installation of risers in the field.

Mustang was awarded the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the topsides of the deepwater spar was awarded in December 2011.

A lump-sum contract was awarded to Technip to engineer, construct and transport the Lucius spar hull. The hull was built at Technip’s yard in Pori, Finland.

The overall project management was provided by Technip’s operating centre in Houston, Texas. Technip has previously built six similar spars for Anadarko, in Neptune, Nansen, Boomvang, Gunnison, Red Hawk and Constitution.

The co-venturers in the Lucius project signed an agreement with the partners in Hadrian South field in 2011. The agreement allows for processing of natural gas produced from the Hadrian South through the Lucius processing facility.

The Hadrian South co-owners paid a production-handling fee and reimbursed the cost of facility upgrades, if any, to the Lucius co-venturers.

In May 2018, McDermott International was contracted for providing engineering, fabrication, installation and pre-commissioning services for subsea infield flowlines, production umbilicals, and associated subsea equipment.