155 million barrels "worst case": there's oil in the Falklands
Rockhopper so far has been the only one company lucky in the chase, and its Sea Lion prospect, after two wells have been drilled and tested, is now valued "worst case" at 155 million barrels. After the first well found commercially viable oil, a second was drilled, and now the tests on it have revealed that: "the well has been highly successful, proving a very-thick, high-quality reservoir package and a substantial oil column."
The original "Worst Case" estimate was for 170 million barrels, and the current value is very close to that. Rockhopper now plans to spud another appraisal well about 4.2km to the west of Sea Lion: a find in there would massive rise the figures of recoverable oil, and start making things really, really interesting.
The most optimistic figures did provide estimates as high as 60 billions barrels for the South Atlantic area, which would mean a second Saudi Arabia, to provide a measure of things.
Desire Petroleum, which drilled six unsuccessful wells in the Falklands last year, rose 2pc on the Market as well, on back of optimism about Rockhopper's success.
Desire's share price rise 6pc on Tuesday, when the company identified two possible new areas for drilling off the Falklands. The search is on, and gods know that some great oil bonanza would be welcome!
HMS Protector named
With the ritual words “I name this ship Protector. May God bless her and all who sail in her.” Beverly Mathews, the wife of Vice Admiral Andrew Mathews (the MOD’s Chief of Materiel – Fleet) and now the sponsor of HMS Protector, did officially name the new (interim, at least for now) Ice Patrol Ship of the Royal Navy. Following those famous words an equally famous maritime tradition was part of yesterday's ceremony in Portsmouth: the smashing of a bottle of champagne against Protector’s side. The ship will be formally commissioned on 23 June.
HMS Enterprise on the way back to home after a record 24 months deployment on the seven seas
The ship of the RN’s hydrographic squadron is currently making her way through the Med, her work updating the charts of the Seven Seas done – for now.
In the two years Enterprise has been away she’s gathered valuable data off the coast of West Africa, the northern Gulf and, most recently, the southern Red Sea.
The last work period was spent off Oman, where she was joined by her sister Echo and the Captain Hydrography and Meteorology (aka Hydrographer of the Navy), Capt Vaughan Nail, Enterprise’s former CO.
He was keen to witness first hand the work the two Es have been conducting on their protracted deployments (Echo sailed from Devonport in January and won’t be home till the eve of the 2012 Olympics) and saw some officer of the watch manoeuvres, including a transfer of stores by line between the sisters. She'll be home next week, after a stop in Gibraltar.
Libya mission officially prolonged by 90 days
Meanwhile (unsurprisingly) there's news of SAS men on the ground between the rebels, directing air strikes. I would expect nothing less, indeed, so i'm not surprised.
HMS Gannet's SAR Flight on alert for nine hours
Tuesday night the old, trusty SAR Sea King and the Navy crews of the SAR Detachment on Prestwik airport (known as HMS Gannet) faced 2 rescues of climbers, one call on Stand-By for another incident, then a casualty transfer from Skye to Glasgow. A busy night, and five peoples rescued.
Are we sure we want the SAR to go civilian...? It seems to work damn well done by RAF and RN.
Warrior stuck by IED, soldiers inside safe
It must have been a powerful IED to turn the huge, heavy Warrior on its right-hand side, but there only were minor injures, in another confirmation of how good the vehicle is.
If only the upgrade could finally be given the go ahead once and for all, we'd secure the future of the Armored Infantry's main kit at least up to 2035...
The RAF keeps pounding
Highly succesful strikes continue over Libya, and now the RAF has fielded on Gioia del Colle air base the 907 kg Paveway III "bunker-buster", the most effective weapon available in the UK to hit hard and deeply buried targets. This will put a lot more targets at reach, and reduce massively the number of places where Gaddafi can safely hide.