The BlackGold oil sands project is located in the bitumen-rich southern Athabasca oil sands region of Alberta. Harvest has a 100% working interest in 15 sections of oil sands leases, located in Township 76, Range 7 West of the 4th Meridian. This area is ideally suited to insitu SAGD development.
The project began in March of 2008 with the initial application for approval to construct, operate and reclaim the oil sands to produce at a design capacity of 10,000 barrels per day of bitumen using steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) technology. The initial project was approved by regulators in March 2010.
The construction of the production facility is ongoing and the first 15 SAGD well pairs from two well pads were successfully drilled in October 2012. First oil production is expected in 2015.
Phase 2 of the project includes plans to expand production to a design capacity 20,000 additional barrels per day of bitumen to make combined production of 30,000 barrels per day. To view the Phase 2 application, please click HERE.
Up to 200 SAGD well pairs from as many as 30 well pads will be drilled to maintain the production capacity of 30,000 barrel per day from the McMurray and Wabiskaw formations over a period of approximately 30 years as shown in figure below.
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) Overview
SAGD technology is a well-recognized and proven commercial insitu thermal recovery process, which we are applying at BlackGold for bitumen extraction from the McMurray and Wabiskaw formations in the Athabasca oil sands area.
SAGD involves drilling of two parallel wells for each well pair. One well in each pair is used as a steam injection well and is placed ~5m above the bottom wellbore, that is used as Bitumen and Produced Water Emulsion Production Well.
In the BlackGold project a pair of 650-~850m horizontal wells drilled in parallel within the McMurray and Wabiskaw resevoirs. These resevoirs are approximately 350-400 metres underneath the surface. The well pair wells, injector and producer, have a vertical separation of approximately 5 metres. The production wells will be placed approximately 1 metre above the base of the bitumen column. As steam is injected into the resevoir and the surrounding bitumen reserves are heated up, the bitumen becomes less viscous and flows into the producing well. Down=hold pumps then transfer the bitumen to the surface. The pressure chamber can be controlled by means of steam injection and Emulsion Production rate adjustments.
Both Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the project will operate as one facility. The production facility for Phase 1 will be completed in January 2014.
Bird's Eye View of the BlackGold Plant:
Blue = 10,000 bbld/d
Grey = Expansion to 30,000 bbl/d