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Noble to construct ultra-deepwater drillship

Noble chairman, president and CEO David W Williams said, “We are excited to announce the continuation of our newbuild program with the addition of this new ultra-deepwater Globetrotter class drillship. The Globetrotter is an innovative design capable of working in up to 10,000 ft of water in benign and hostile environments around the world. At a purchase price of under $600 million, we expect to present our shareholders with superior returns while at the same time offering an uncompromising product to our customers. We are confident we will put this unit under contract before year-end, enabling us to take advantage of our very competitive option pricing for future Globetrotter projects.”

The drillship will measure 620 ft long and 105 ft wide and will utilize Huisman’s multi-purpose tower design with a drilling side and a pipe assembly side. The Globetrotter will be capable of drilling to a vertical depth of 40,000 ft and will feature DP-3 stationkeeping ability, 18,000 tons of variable deck load, and quarters for 180 personnel.

“This project is confirmation of our view of the continuing strength of the current cycle. Deepwater dynamics remain robust, and we see unsatisfied demand for ultra-deepwater rigs extending out into 2012. The Globetrotter is a welcome addition as one of Noble’s next-generation, cost-efficient and innovative units that we will put to work to help meet the world’s energy demands,” he said.

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