Ithaca taps GE for Stella subsea trees, control systems

By Phaedra Friend Troy

Ithaca Energy (AIM:IAE) (TSX:IAE) has awarded GE Oil & Gas (NYSE:GE) the contract to manufacture and supply subsea trees and control systems to the Stella field development in the UK North Sea.

The initial phase of detailed engineering work has started on Stella, focusing on the procurement of forgings and materials for the systems. Being developed as an integrated package, the subsea systems will be designed for installation using a heavy-duty jackup drilling rig.

Situated in the Central Graben of the UK North Sea, the Stella field is located in the Greater Stella Area, which also contains the Harrier, Hurricane and Helios undeveloped discoveries.

The integrated field development calls for five production wells to be drilled from a subsea drilling center on Stella, and another two production wells drilled from a center on Harrier. The Harrier center will be tied back to the Stella center, and production will then be sent via subsea pipeline to a nearby existing production facility.

Appraisal drilling of the Hurricane discovery is planned at the same time as the Stella and Harrier development drilling.

Currently, Ithaca is performing a geotechnical program to determine if certain jackups are appropriate at four potential drilling locations on the Stella and Harrier fields. Studies include test boreholes before the planned Hurricane appraisal well. 

Ithaca serves as the operator of Stella with 50.33 percent interest. Project partners include Dyas with 31.67 percent and Challenger Minerals with 18 percent.

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