An Australian joint venture has issued a tender for a semi-submersible drilling rig for the Baleen-1 gas exploration well in the offshore Sydney basin.

The tender has been issued to multiple drilling contractors who have semi-submersible drilling units in the region, said BPH Energy, a publicly-listed shareholder of the operator Advent Energy.

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The Baleen-1 well is planned to be drilled in 125 metres of water and 30 kilometres away from the coastal city of Newcastle, New South Wales.

The drilling of the well is subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to take around 40 days to reach total depth.

The well has two objectives: a gas reservoir target and evaluation of the reservoir for carbon capture storage, subject to funding, added BPH.

The joint venture owners of Block PEP11 are Advent (85%) and Bounty Oil and Gas (15%).