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Helium One shares soar on latest Itumbula West progress

(Sharecast News) - Tanzania-focussed helium explorer Helium One Global announced significant progress in its latest drilling operation, the Itumbula West-1 well, on Monday. The AIM-traded firm said the well had successfully completed all wireline logging and drill stem testing (DST) operations, and managed to flow a high concentration of helium to the surface from the basement, with a measured concentration reaching up to 4.7%.

It said that concentration was nearly 9,000 times above background levels, signifying the promising potential of the helium reservoir.

During the basement testing phase, hydrogen was also observed to flow to the surface, boasting a concentration of 2.2% - over 37,000 times above background levels, underlining the substantial presence of helium and hydrogen in the well.

Wireline logs, including image logs, were said to have been instrumental in pinpointing the optimal well test intervals.

Additionally, downhole fluid samples were obtained from three separate well test intervals, both in the basement and across the fault zones.

The samples were analysed at an onsite pressure-volume-temperature (PVT) laboratory, confirming the presence of elevated helium.

Duplicate samples collected from all three intervals would be sent to a second laboratory for further analysis.

The Itumbula West-1 well also encountered hot basement fluids with temperatures exceeding 80 degrees Celsius across the fault zone and in the basement.

Those findings were consistent with helium and hydrogen-prone intervals, suggesting the potential for a low enthalpy geothermal system.

Following the operations, the well was now undergoing casing and suspension.

Moreover, the company reported a remarkable reduction of over 350% in non-productive time for the Epiroc Predator 220 drilling rig between Tai-3 and Itumbula West-1, demonstrating improved efficiency and productivity.

"We are delighted with the findings from Itumbula West-1 and the results from the down hole well testing have clearly confirmed the presence of a producing helium province in the Rukwa Rift Basin," said chief executive officer Lorna Blaisse.

"The learnings from the Tai-3 well provided invaluable additional subsurface information and how the helium system works.

"By applying these findings, we adjusted our well location at Itumbula, and this has certainly yielded the results we were hoping for and justified that decision."

Blaisse said flowing helium to surface in such high concentrations was a "huge milestone" for the company, adding that it would now fully evaluate the results and focus on advancing this project in the most effective way possible.

"This drilling campaign has been a huge success for both the company and for Tanzania.

"We look forward to providing further updates as we fully evaluate the results and outline how we are planning the next steps to advance the project."

At 1147 GMT, shares in Helium One Global were up 89.95% at 2.62p.

Reporting by Josh White for

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