UPDATE 1-Exxon says drills record Sakhalin well

Fri Jan 28, 2011 11:27am EST

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* Well drilled in 60 days

* Record depth reached

HOUSTON Jan 28 (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) said on Friday it has drilled a well that has a record horizontal reach of 7.13 miles (11,475 meters) from a land-based rig to the Odoptu field offshore far east Russia.

The well, part of the Sakhalin-1 project, underscores the difficulty oil companies increasingly need to overcome to tap oil and gas reserves.

In recent days, Russia has signed deals with western oil companies, including Exxon, as it trades access to its vast oil and gas reserves for the exploration expertise of western oil majors [ID:nLDE70R0BL].

Odoptu, one of three Sakhalin-1 Project fields, is located 5 to 7 miles (8 to 11 kilometers) offshore northeast Sakhalin Island. The Odoptu OP-11 well reached a record total measured depth of 40,502 feet (12,345 meters or 7.67 miles) and took 60 days to drill, Exxon said.

Exxon Neftegas is the operator of the Sakhalin-1 Project on behalf of an international consortium that includes affiliates of the Russian state company Rosneft (ROSN.MM) and Sakhalinmorneftegas-Shelf; the Japanese corporation SODECO; and the Indian state oil company ONGC Videsh Ltd.

Shares of Exxon, which is due to report fourth-quarter earnings on Monday, fell 55 cents, or less that one percent, to $79.33 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Anna Driver in Houston; editing by Gunna Dickson)

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