50 years of exploration on the Dutch Continental ShelfL10-A complex. Source: Neptune Energy

50 years of exploration on the Dutch Continental Shelf

On 23 October 1969, the L10-1 well was spudded. It was the first well in block L10 on the Dutch Continental Shelf and was drilled by Placid, the original license holder for the block before .

The licence was awarded in the very first licensing round the previous year. L10-1 was drilled by the jack-up rig Penrod 58 and gas was found in the Rotliegend sandstone at a depth of 3,820 m, paving the way for the creation of the L10-G field.

This success resulted in a major exploration campaign on the block and in 1970 the L10-3 discovered the huge L10 field, which was developed by installing the main L10-A complex which Neptune continues to operate today.

Placid became the first offshore gas producer on the Dutch Continental Shelf and currently, Neptune Energy remains the largest offshore gas producer in The Netherlands. Neptune operates 26 production licences and maintains a large infrastructure of 32 offshore facilities including four major treatment hubs.

Neptune’s assets on the Dutch Continental Shelf. Source: Neptune Energy

L10 Area

The L10 Area comprises of mature gas fields on the western side of the Dutch North Sea sector centred around the L10-A complex.

The Dutch offshore industry originated in the L10 area in the 1970s. Gas production began in 1975, three years after the installation of the L10-A drilling platform.

The complex now consists of four bridge-linked platforms: a drilling, a production, a riser and a compression platform.

The L10-A gathers gas from numerous fields in the area, including Neptune-operated unmanned platforms K12-C/CC, K12-D, K12-G, K12-K, L10-B, L10-E, L10-F, L10-L and L10-M.

In 2019 Neptune was selected to participate in a pioneering pilot project to create the first offshore hydrogen plant in the Dutch sector of the North Sea utilising platform Q13a.