Transocean announced this week that its newbuild ultra-deepwater drillship Discoverer Americas has commenced operations in the US Gulf of Mexico for Statoil Gulf of Mexico under a four-year drilling contract.
The dynamically positioned double-hulled drillship is an enhanced version of the predecessor Enterprise-class drillships. It features the company’s dual-activity drilling technology that allows for parallel drilling operations. Along with a new and enhanced top drive system, a high-pressure mud-pump system and other unique features, the drillship can target the drilling of wells up to 40,000 ft of total depth. The rig also has a variable deckload of more than 20,000 metric tons and the capability of drilling in water depths of up to 12,000 ft.
Transocean has six other newbuild ultra-deepwater floaters in various stages of construction or preparation for initial contracts that are scheduled to commence operations in the next two years. Three of those vessels are the Discoverer Inspiration, Discoverer India and Discoverer Luanda, which are also enhanced Enterprise-class drillships. The others include the semisubmersible rig Development Driller III and the drillships Deepwater Champion and Dhirubhai Deepwater KG2 (owned by a joint venture company with Pacific Drilling Ltd).