The Ocyan drillship ODN II has set sail to the Foz do Amazonas basin in Brazil’s northern equatorial margin to spud a prospect that may unlock a new exploration frontier in the environmentally sensitive region.

Petrobras chartered the rig for a two-well campaign in the northern equatorial margin but is still awaiting approval from environmental regulator Ibama to drill the Morpho wildcat in Block FZA-M-59.

The probe is about 40 kilometres from the French Guiana border in water depths of more than 2500 metres — an area labelled by Petrobras as “Amapa Deep-Water”, given its position off the coast of Amapa state.