Lifting the Drilling Moratorium in the US through Innovative Hardware Development, post Macondo

24 April, 2020 by Add Energy

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This week marked the 10th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon incident that took the lives of 11 men and wreaked havoc on the environment, as well as the oil and gas industry globally.

AL_Capping_Stack_Image_2In response to this incident, the US federal government put a hold on all subsea drilling activity in the US until more stringent safety systems were put in place to mitigate risk and provide contingency in the event of a similar incident. As experts in the field of well control hardware, our long time partners, Trendsetter Engineering were tasked with building the first Capping Stack- a well closure device capable of sealing a leaking well, used if or when a BOP has failed to close the well. This development was directly responsible for lifting the drilling moratorium in the US, allowing operators and drilling contractors to continue their subsea drilling operations post Macondo.

Following on from the successful introduction of Capping Stacks to the offshore drilling industry,  Trendsetter Engineering and Add Energy joined forces to co-develop the industry’s next major well contingency solution, the RWIS (Relief Well Injection Spool).

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The RWIS is a patented piece of specialist subsea equipment that enables operators to stop a blowout from prolific reservoirs safely and efficiently via a single relief well. This is made possible with the RWIS by increasing the pump rate of kill mud into the blowing well by removing the bottle-neck caused by restrictive choke and kill lines from the surface vessel to the seabed.

In addition to the significant results the RWIS delivers around subsea well contingency, the RWIS provides substantial cost benefits for operators or drilling contractors who have access rights to the hardware, these include:

 

  • Increases well kill injection rates by 300%, allowing bigger wells to be developed due to assurance on contingency
  • Reduces CAPEX investment due to less materials required for field development
  • Allows production targets to be met with fewer wells, assuring the project can be developed within budget

The RWIS has recently been contracted by several major oil and gas operators from around the globe, proving the all-important industry driven technical approval from our clients.

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