Aker BP all set to deploy Maersk rig on North Sea field
Norwegian oil and gas company Aker BP has received consent from Norway’s offshore safety regulator to use one of Maersk Drilling-owned rigs for well intervention and living quarters on a field located in the North Sea off Norway.
The Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) said earlier during the week that it had given Aker BP consent to use Maersk Integrator rig for well intervention and living quarters on the Valhall Flanke Nord field.
Maersk Integrator is a jack-up drilling rig, which was delivered by the Keppel Shipyard in Singapore in 2014. This rig, which received an Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC) from the PSA in June 2015, is an MSC CJ70-X150-MD, designed for year-round operation in the North Sea, based on the design of the Mærsk Innovator and the Mærsk Inspirer rigs.
Back in December 2021, Maersk Drilling and Aker BP entered into a Heads of Agreement – estimated at around $1 billion – to renew and extend the frame agreement that establishes Maersk Drilling as the firm’s jack-up rig drilling partner.
A few months later, Maersk Drilling and Aker BP agreed to a rig swap, whereby the jack-up rig Maersk Reacher was to be replaced by the low-emission jack-up rig Maersk Integrator offshore Norway in end-February/early March 2022. Based on this deal, Maersk Integrator will be busy until January 2023 with well intervention and stimulation activities at Aker BP’s Valhall and Hod fields.
When it comes to the Valhall field, which is located in the southern Norwegian North Sea, the production started in 1982 and the Valhall area consists of a field centre with five platforms connected by bridges, and four wellhead platforms that are remotely controlled from the field centre. The field is powered with electricity from shore.
Moreover, the Valhall Flank developments are two identical unmanned wellhead platforms each equipped with 16 drilling slots and located about six kilometres from the existing Valhall facilities where the well streams are processed. The South Flank started production in 2003, and the North Flank came on stream in 2004.
Regarding Aker BP’s latest developments, it is worth noting that the Norwegian player completed the merger with Lundin Energy’s E&P business at the end of June.
This merger resulted in the creation of the largest listed E&P company focused exclusively on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) and the second-largest one operating on the NCS, based on Aker BP’s statement.