Road to Production: Botala’s first pilot well finds similar coal seams to initial well, a good sign for future gas flow
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Botala is making good progress on its Serowe pilot production program in Botswana with the first pilot well, Serowe-3.2, successfully completed on time and on budget.
The company is currently focused on drilling and completing four wells – collectively known as Project Pitse – at its 70%-owned Serowe coalbed methane (CBM) to determine the commercial flow-rate potential within surrounds of the Serowe-3.1 well.
Should this be successful, Botala Energy (ASX:BTE) will then move to covert the five-well cluster into the first commercial production location in that region of the broader Serowe project.
Flow testing of Serowe-3.1, which started in November 2022, has already resulted in gas being flared at surface with an instantaneous flow rate of 42,000 standard cubic feet of gas per day – a sign that the coals at the well location have reached their desorption pressure point, resulting in the release of a sustainable gas flow.
Project Pitse is well-timed given the growing demand for gas to replace coal in southern Africa and serve as a bridge towards renewable energy.
Besides the potential for gas sales into Botswana and beyond, the company could also use gas for its planned 20-megawatt solar gas hybrid system near Serowe town as well as gas/electricity to potential tenants of its planned 1,520ha Leupane Energy Hub & Industrial Park.
“Project Pitse really is an exciting project as it is the only project targeting the upper coal seam as the primary gas producer, which we believe is the key to unlocking the gas potential of this basin,” Botala CEO Kris Martinick told Stockhead.
The company has now drilled Serowe-3.2 – the first of four pilot wells – to a total depth of 471m.
Importantly, the well intersected 37m of coal within the Serowe, Upper and Lower Morupule coal seams from a depth of 372m, which is just 2m lower than at Serowe-3.1 about 480m to the northwest.
Logging has also extended the area of the target coals in the upper seams found within the company’s acreage.
“It’s encouraging to see the Serowe coal seam (our primary target) was almost identical to that encountered at the initial Serowe 3-1 well,” Martinick said.
“The two lower seams, which are also very important were similar in content and thickness.
“However, it is the upper seam which distinguishes our acreage. With Serowe-3.1 flaring gas it builds confidence in Project Pitse producing gas mainly from the Serowe coal seam.”
Botala expects to spud the second pilot well – Serowe-3.3, about 700m south of Serowe-3.1 — in a week’s time.
This article was developed in collaboration with Botala Energy, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.