New York — Oil company executives familiar with Alaskan production call the discovery of oil in two wells drilled in the Beaufort Sea on Alaska's North Slope "important" and "exciting," Monitor correspondent Ron Scherer reports. The wells, about 10 miles from the giant Prudhoe Bay field, are not an extension of that area but are in a new field. Initial testing produced oil at flow rates of 300 to 1,100 barrels of oil in one well and 1,900 to 2,600 in the other. But Exxon Corporation, which announced the discovery, says the wells should be able to produce at "substantially higher" rates when completed. Amoco Production Company, Atlantic Richfield Company, and Union Oil Company were also partners in the find.