Photo: Deepsea Atlantic rig; Source: Odfjell Drilling

More drilling work on Johan Sverdrup for Odfjell rig

Norwegian state-owned energy giant Equinor has exercised its option to drill additional wells with an Odfjell Drilling-owned rig, extending the rig’s stay offshore Norway until the first quarter of 2024.

Back in July 2020, Equinor awarded a letter of intent to Odfjell Drilling for the Deepsea Atlantic rig to drill 12 wells for Phase 2 of the Johan Sverdrup field development in Norway, following its work on phase 1. This deal was expected to start in the first quarter of 2022.

Come August 2020, Equinor added three more wells to the rig’s backlog, which were exercised under the continued optionality mechanism in the contract the two companies inked back in May 2018. In December 2020, Equinor exercised two new wells for the Deepsea Atlantic rig under the Master Frame Agreement.

Moreover, an option for another well was exercised in January 2021. When March 2021 came, Equinor exercised an option for one more well with an estimated start in the second or third quarter of 2021. Later that month, Equinor exercised an additional well for the Deepsea Atlantic rig. This was followed by the addition of one more well in May 2021.

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In an update on Monday, Odfjell Drilling disclosed that Equinor has exercised its priced options for the Deepsea Atlantic rig to drill five additional wells on the Johan Sverdrup Phase 2 development under the contract entered into on 23 November 2020.

The Norwegian offshore drilling contractor explained that these five wells with an approximate value of $64 million are anticipated to take approximately 190 days, extending the rig’s firm backlog into Q1 2024.

The 2009-built Deepsea Atlantic is a sixth-generation deepwater and harsh environment semi-submersible, dual derrick, dynamic-positioned rig of enhanced GVA 7500 design.

Recently, Equinor awarded extensions to two Norwegian contractors – Aker Solutions and Aibel – which will enable the two to carry out maintenance and modification (M&M) work on the Johan Sverdrup field until February 2026.

Located on Utsira High in the central part of the North Sea, in a water depth of 110-120 metres, Johan Sverdrup is the third-largest oil field on the Norwegian continental shelf, with estimated resources of 2.7 billion barrels of oil equivalent. This field – which was discovered in 2010 – has an estimated 50-year lifespan.