Rex Energy Corp.’s first well tests in its new Moraine East area in northern Butler County, PA, were in line with the performance of its core acreage in the southern part of the county, with one producing the company’s highest condensate rate yet in the region, Rex said Thursday.

The company completed drilling operations at the four-well Renick pad in the first quarter (seeShale Daily, March 31). The Renick 3H, the only Upper Devonian well drilled to the Burkett Shale on the pad, tested at a 24-hour rate of 8.2 MMcfe/d. Rex said volumes consisted of 3.5 MMcfe/d of natural gas, 675 b/d of natural gas liquids (NGL) and 101 b/d of condensate, the company’s highest condensate rate in western Pennsylvania to date.

CEO Tom Stabley said the wells are similar to those drilled in Rex’s core area farther south and added that the company was “particularly pleased with the increased liquids production.”

The Renick 2H, a Marcellus Shale well, tested at a 24-hour rate of 6.6 MMcfe/d, which consisted of 3 MMcf/d of natural gas, 566 b/d of NGLs and 47 b/d of condensate. The company said the well was still cleaning up at the time of the test and said it expects production to increase.

The Renick 2H was drilled to a lateral length of 6,000 feet and completed with 40 stages and 2,300 pounds of sand per lateral foot. The Renick 3H was drilled to a lateral length of 5,700 feet and completed with 38 stages and the same sand concentration. The company has been completing its wells with more proppant, going from about 1,800 pounds per foot last year to a maximum of 2,500 pounds this year (see Shale Daily, March 16)

The company acquired 24,000 net acres in northern Butler County last year as part of a larger $120 million, 207,000 net acre deal in Ohio and Pennsylvania with Royal Dutch Shell plc affiliate SWEPI LP (see Shale Daily, Aug. 13, 2014).

Rex said it would not test the other two wells on the Renick pad. It plans to place them into sales at the end of the year after MarkWest Energy Partners LP completes a 200 MMcf/d processing expansion at its Keystone complex in Butler County and a gathering system is completed for the Moraine East acreage (see Shale Daily, June 4; Aug. 26, 2014).