First deepwater well spudded on the Gina Krog field

Source:Statoil

Deepwater drilling of the first production well at the Gina Krog field has started, just eight days after the drilling rig arrived at the North Sea field.

Deepwater drilling of the first production deepwater well at the Gina Krog field has started, just eight days after the drilling rig arrived at the North Sea field.

The drilling started on July 20, just after 18:00 CET. The Maersk Integrator rig will drill wells until sometime in 2019.

“We will now drill and firstly install ten 30 inch conductors. We will then drill the top section of six wells. The plan is that two to three wells will be drilled into the reservoir before the topside arrives from South Korea,” says Tonny Lemqvist, Statoil's drilling supervisor.

Busy year

2015 is an extremely busy year for the Gina Krog field development project, and the milestones are many.

On Saturday 11 June, the installation of the steel jacket and pre-drilling module was completed and the heavy-lifting vessel Hermod could leave the field.

The following day, the Maersk Integrator rig arrived at the field to be connected to the pre-drilling module and prepare for drilling. 

Maersk Integrator is one of the world's largest jack up-rigs and is brand new. It was built at Keppel FELS in Singapore, and was delivered one month ahead of schedule, without any HSE incidents.

Mikal Thormodsen was in charge of the intake of the rig, and followed the construction on behalf of Statoil in Singapore. The reason he gives for the success is good cooperation:

"Several parties have been involved with different jobs and responsibilities, however we have had one joint goal: Having the rig ready to start drilling operations at the field in the summer of 2015,” says Thormodsen.

Risk and optimism

It is not unusual that newbuilds are delayed, and rigs must often undergo a period of yard work in Norway before they are ready for their offshore assignment. The Gina Krog project chose to set clear, ambitious goals and to be optimistic.

"The rig arrived in Norway in April and Maersk carried out the final tests and preparations in Åmøyfjorden outside Stavanger, however without needing to dock the rig. We were also able to get all third-party equipment on board in time. It has not been easy, but we managed it," says Morten Hyvik, project manager for Gina Krog Drilling and Wells.

Maersk delivered the rig on time and budget and without HSE incidents.

"We now expect this good trend to continue and that we will carry out safe and efficient drilling operations. The rig design facilitates this," says Hyvik.

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