July 15, 2008
Seadrill newbuild semi hits commissioning delays
Seadrill says that commissioning of the drilling package of the ultra-deepwater semi-submersible rig West Phoenix is taking longer than originally anticipated.
The rig was originally delivered from Samsung Heavy Industries in Korea on March 31 and has a three-year contract with Total Norge for operations in the North Atlantic region. The unit is currently in the port of Las Palmas, Spain, en route to Norway. In Las Palmas, the unit's main drilling equipment systems are undergoing testing and commissioning activities. Because this is taking longer than expected, start-up of operations for Total on the Victoria field has been postponed from late August to October this year.
"We are not pleased with the development, but are working closely with our suppliers in order to ensure effective delivery within the revised timeline," says Alf C. Thorkildsen, CEO of Seadrill Management AS.
Meantime, Seadrill reports that the ultra-deepwater drillship West Polaris, built by Samsung Heavy Industries, will leave Korean waters tomorrow after completing fuelling and some general mobilization activities en route to its first drilling assignment for Exxon in Brazil.
West Polaris has a four-year contract for worldwide exploration activities for Exxon. Exxon will pay Seadrill a pre-agreed dayrate for the transit period in addition to fuel.
"The construction of West Polaris was successfully completed on time and at budget and we are now looking forward to taking the new drillship into what will be our first deepwater drilling operations offshore Brazil," says Mr. Thorkildsen.