Maersk Drilling orders 20K BOP, risers for BP project

Posted on 24 June 2014

Maersk Drilling has ordered four BOPs and two risers from GE Oil and Gas that will be used in the Project 20K partnership with BP. The BOPs and risers will be delivered and deployed on two Maersk Drilling 20K drilling rigs by year-end 2018. The order includes the option for the delivery of additional BOPs and will be subject to BP and Maersk Drilling’s final investment decision on a 20K drilling rig contract.

“Maersk Drilling has an ambition of becoming a significant player in the ultra-deepwater market and to grow in what we call technically and operationally challenging areas,” said Claus V. Hemmingsen, CEO in Maersk Drilling and member of the executive board of the Maersk Group. “Our agreement with BP on Project 20K fits perfectly into this strategy, and with the order of the blowout preventers, we are passing a key milestone in the development of a truly purpose-built 20K rig. This project has been a unique opportunity to work closely with BP and co-create a new rig design that is safe and efficient and technologically best-in-class. The intention and our expectation is to see a 20K rig contract realized next year.”

Maersk Drilling has begun talks with shipyards regarding the construction of 20K series rigs.

In February 2013, BP and Maersk Drilling signed a partnership agreement to develop conceptual engineering designs for a new breed of advanced-technology offshore rigs, critical to unlocking the next frontier of deepwater oil and gas resources. The companies are collaborating on concepts for deepwater drilling rigs that can operate in high-pressure and high-temperature reservoirs up to 20,000 psi and 350°F.

“This is a key milestone in progression of BP’s delivery of Project 20K technologies and supports our industry relationships toward the delivery of standard industry solutions,” said Gary Jones, VP of BP’s Global Wells Organization.

GE Oil and Gas will design, test and manufacture the new 20K BOPs and risers at GE’s recently expanded Technology Center in Houston.

“GE Oil & Gas is proud to join with BP and Maersk Drilling in developing new 20K psi drilling system technologies to meet new ultra-deepwater production goals,” said Andrew Way, President of GE Oil & Gas – Drilling & Surface. “By drawing upon the combined expertise of GE’s technology portfolio and operational excellence, we are excited to provide one of the most advanced drilling systems the industry has to offer.”

A jointly staffed engineering team will be located in Houston, with support from Maersk Drilling’s headquarters in Copenhagen, Denmark. The team has worked on the engineering studies required to select the design of the 20K drilling rigs, riser and BOP systems. BP estimates that the application of this technology across its global portfolio could potentially access an additional 10 billion to 20 billion bbl of resources.

Project 20K is a trademark of BP.

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