GE Oil & Gas has received an order for the offshore oil and gas industry’s first 20,000-psi (20-ksi)-rated deepwater blowout preventer (BOP) stack and riser systems from Maersk Drilling. The equipment, due to enter service in the first half of 2018, is being supplied for Maersk and BP as part of their joint Project 20K Rigs design program. (Earlier post.)
The technology is intended to enable exploration of deepwater basins that are inaccessible with conventional 15-ksi hardware. It was the failure of the BOP stack on the Macondo well that enabled the massive oil release from the Deepwater Horizon disaster.
BP and Maersk Drilling announced their joint study agreement in February 2013 to develop conceptual engineering designs for a new generation of advanced drilling rigs that will be critical to producing from the next frontier of deepwater oil and gas resources. Called 20K Rigs, the BP-Maersk Drilling agreement will result in deepwater drilling vessels designed to efficiently operate in high-pressure and high-temperature reservoirs up to 20,000 psi and 350 °Fahrenheit.
GE Oil & Gas will design, test and manufacture the new 20-ksi BOPs and risers at the company’s recently expanded Houston Technology Center in Texas.
The 20-ksi drilling system being developed will include a number of new real-time monitoring and condition-based maintenance technologies aimed at improving uptime by reducing unplanned maintenance. From higher performance mechanicals to real-time monitoring and condition-based maintenance systems, this next-generation system can make accessible new offshore drilling frontiers.— Andrew Way, president and CEO of GE’s Drilling & Surface business—GE Oil & Gas