NOPEC has been awarded an agreement in the province of Mendoza in Argentina that allows access to all wells in the province.

NOPEC will deliver standardized data that will help make more efficient decisions to unravel the opportunities within the Neuquén Basin.


"We have enormous geological potential, and added to the province's institutional stability and incentive policies, make Mendoza an appealing place for oil and gas investment."

The Director of Hydrocarbons Ing. Estanislao Schilardi Puga


Mendoza, at the central part of Argentina, is usually known for its wine crops. Nonetheless, this province also has prolific hydrocarbon resources coming from the Cuyana Basin and the Northern portion of the Neuquén Basin, called the Neuquina Sur Mendocina Basin. In fact, the Province of Mendoza ranks fourth in the conventional hydrocarbons production in the country, and shares the world class Vaca Muerta shale formation with the provinces of Neuquén and Rio Negro.


About Mendoza's Geology

The Neuquén Basin is filled by more than 6Km of sediments ranging from the Upper Triassic to the Paleocene. It holds more than three source rocks both of marine and lacustrine origin which makes the Neuquén Basin one of the most prolific hydrocarbon basins in the country. About 20% of the Neuquén Basin is in the province of Mendoza and a big portion has been subject to volcanic activity.


The stratigraphic column is strongly deformed at the western side by the tectonic effects of the Andean Orogeny, whilst at the eastern side follows the external platform trend coming from the Rio Negro and Neuquén provinces. The diversity in morpho structural regions within the Neuquén Basin portray various opportunities to explore the hydrocarbon resources of the Province of Mendoza.


There are plenty of bidding opportunities for conventional and non-conventional hydrocarbon exploration in the Province of Mendoza. The bidding process follows the current regulations of the Mendoza government; more information listed below. 


Mendoza Opportunities

NOPEC Geophysical has prepared focused well data packages to explore the opportunities in the Province of Mendoza within the Neuquén Basin. Keep reading to discover what the local experts have to say about Mendoza Opportunities.

  • Igneous Rocks

Even though the non-conventional term is commonly associated with shale resources, igneous rock related petroleum systems are non-conventional too. The volcanic imprint in the Province of Mendoza allows for distinct petroleum systems associated with igneous rocks, such as sills intruding the source rock and becoming reservoirs, or localized petroleum systems. 


The volcanic activity in the region has been studied by many companies, research institutes and universities. Therefore, NOPEC Geophysical consulted the industry and academia referent Hernan de la Cal about this topic. 


Hernan is a Senior Geologist at ROCH, and actively works with the academia, supporting the research about magmatism related to hydrocarbons and is also coordinating webinars on magmatism and petroleum systems in the framework of the IAPG Exploration and Development Commission. 


  • Unconventional Shale Oil Resources

An important portion of the Vaca Muerta Formation enters the Province of Mendoza. The shale oil and shale gas resources from Vaca Muerta are currently being exploited in the neighboring Province of Neuquén, even in the blocks at the border with Mendoza.


Exploration for shale oil and shale started in Mendoza by the hands of YPF and Phoenix Global Resources and various fields already produce oil from Vaca Muerta. Agrio Formation also shows possibilities as a resource play, but investigation is still very recent.  With the proper well data more opportunities are there to be discovered within the non-conventional shale resources.



  • Heavy Oil Fields Trend

From the Rio Negro Province, through the Neuquén and La Pampa Provinces, the stars of the external platform oil fields trend are the Corcobo and Llancanelo, both in the Province of Mendoza. The eastern platform provides a lengthy trend of shallow heavy oil development opportunities to be unraveled with new technologies and creative thinking. 

Mendoza Province

About Mendoza's Government

The Mendoza provincial authorities put incentives in place to attract investors, and created a local ecosystem for small and mid-sized companies who are willing to create economic growth in the province. Some of the programs developed are known as "Mendoza Activa" and the TEA's, or Technical Evaluation Agreements. 


  • Mendoza Activa

The COVID-19 pandemic has left a crisis without precedent in Argentina. The Mendoza’s government authorities have designed a support system to reactivate the local economy through private investment, allowing for tax advantages.

Mendoza Activa is a program that would promote the reactivation of stranded oil and gas fields to help revitalize the province’s economy and energy matrix. The authorities have already received enquiries and seen reactivation; they look forward to keep them coming.

For more information on how to apply, click HERE. (Please note that the official website is in Spanish.)

  • TEA's

Promoted by the Government of the Province of Mendoza in 2017, the Technical Evaluation Agreement (TEA) seeks to promote areas in available blocks of the province, with low oil potential and without any activity. The TEAs are not a novelty since they are contemplated in the current national hydrocarbon law, however they had never been implemented before in the Province of Mendoza.

In 2020, the provincial energy company EMESA adopted this type of contract to include marginal exploratory areas, where more exploratory (and economic) efforts are required due to the scarce subsurface information available.

"It is a modality with very low risk, which helps to encourage investments and works prior to exploration," explained Estanislao Schilardi, director of Hydrocarbons of the Government of Mendoza.

Through the TEA agreements, companies will be able to present a two-year investment plan to carry out all the necessary studies for a possible hydrocarbon exploration and/or exploitation scheme, which will then be evaluated by the Province. All the information that results from this first stage becomes part of the hydrocarbon database of the Province, since the final objective is to increase the level of information on the energy potential of the Mendoza's subsurface.

At the end of the contract, the companies that participated in the TEA can request a call for bids from the province. They will have a "right to improve the offer" and in case of losing the tender, they will receive a compensation from the winners for the investments made during the TEA.    


Find out more

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TGS operates as NOPEC Geophysical in Argentina.

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Opportunities in the Neuquén Basin