InfraStrata plc (AIM:INFA), the independent petroleum exploration and gas storage company, is pleased to announce the commencement of drilling operations at the Islandmagee-1 well in Northern Ireland.
The Islandmagee-1 well began drilling ("spudded") at 18:00 hours on 15 May 2015.
Drilling operations are expected to take around 5 weeks. The well will be drilled to a total drilled depth of approximately 1,700 metres.
The objective of the well is to confirm the feasibility of the development of an underground gas storage facility in salt caverns, by obtaining wireline data and core samples of the Permian salt to undertake laboratory analyses, including rock mechanical tests, to further define the design parameters and cost estimate for the project.
These results will enable the project developer, Islandmagee Storage Limited (InfraStrata 65% shareholder), to complete this phase of work in Q4 2015.
The costs of this 2015 work programme are being funded 50% by the European Commission under their Connecting Europe Facility.
Commenting on the announcement, Andrew Hindle, CEO of InfraStrata said:
“We are pleased to report commencement of the drilling of the well at Islandmagee and look forward to updating shareholders with the initial results from the well at the end of June. The analysis of the Permian salt is an integral part in the development of the gas storage project. The project is recognised on a European level as a strategically important asset that will improve the security of supply and increase the flexibility available in the gas markets in Great Britain, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and enable greater interconnectivity across these three neighbouring markets, whilst supporting the achievement of national renewable and carbon reduction targets.”