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Transocean Ltd. has been awarded 10-year contracts for four newbuild dynamically positioned ultra-deepwater drillships by Shell.
Shipyard delivery for the first drillship is scheduled for mid-2015. The remaining three drillships are expected to be delivered from the shipyard at approximately six-month intervals thereafter, according to a news release. After customer acceptance, the contracts are expected to commence in 2015 and 2016, contributing an estimated revenue backlog of US $7.6 billion, excluding mobilization. The aggregate capital investment for the four newbuild rigs is an estimated $3.0 billion, excluding capitalized interest.
All four drillships are designed to operate in water depths of up to 3,658 m (12,000 ft) and drill wells to 12,192 m (40,000 ft). Featuring equipment including Transocean’s patented dual-activity drilling technology, the newbuild drillships will possess hoisting capacity. The drillships also will have a variable deckload capacity of 23,000 metric tons and feature enhanced well completion capabilities.
In addition, each newbuild rig will be outfitted with two 15,000 psi blowout preventers (BOPs), which are expected to reduce customer non-productive time between wells. The four newbuild drillships will be able to accommodate a future upgrade to a 20,000 psi BOP, when it becomes available. The rigs also will feature diesel engines configured to comply with anticipated Tier III International Maritime Organization (IMO) emissions standards.
The newbuild rigs will be constructed at the Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co. facility at Okpo, South Korea. Construction on the first drillship is expected to commence during 4Q 2013.