Archer has secured a contract with Statoil for the permanent plugging and abandonment of 12 gas wells on the Heimdal field in the Norwegian North Sea using Archer’s latest modular rig, the Archer Topaz. The rig is operated by Statoil with partners Total, Centrica and Petoro.
Carrying out plugging and abandonment operations on a modular rig is a first for Archer and the industry as a whole. The Archer Topaz, Archer’s second modular rig, has been designed and will be built in cooperation with German rig manufacturer Max Streicher GMBH, in line with current NORSOK regulations.
The total contract value, including the startup, operating and decommissioning phases, is estimated at US $115 million. Operations are expected to commence in the second half of 2014, and the contract duration is 34 months with four option periods of three months each.
“This modular rig contract for Archer in the North Sea represents an important strategic move in the direction of offshore plugging and abandonment solutions. We are excited to secure our first modular rig contract in the North Sea, which is the market the modular rig was designed for,” Kjetil Bjørnson, president and general manager of North Sea region, Archer, said.
“The award of this contract demonstrates the attractiveness of our modular rig concept which combines flexibility, efficiency, short rig-up and rig-down time, making it a unique proposition for our customers both for plug and abandonment services and production drilling from fixed offshore platforms,” he countined
The new modular rig will follow the design of Archer’s first modular rig, the Archer Emerald, which is currently operating for Shell Todd (STOS) in New Zealand on a production-drilling contract since 2012.