The semisubmersible rig Ocean Rover was used by Murphy Sabah Oil Company to
batch-set 23 wellheads in 4,350-ft-deep water with zero health, safety, and
environment (HSE) incidents.
The batch-set team worked to maintain safety and performance and to overcome
numerous logistical and operational challenges. Implementing lessons learned
and development of recommended practices resulted in continuous improvement
throughout the project.
The program was completed in 63 days. The average installation time for
conductor and surface casing was 3.36 days from start to finish. Total
materials used were 50,000 ft of casing, 3,060 tonnes of cement, and 78,000 bbl
of 16.6 lbm/gal dynamic kill drilling (DKD) mud.
Kikeh is 75 nautical miles off the west coast of Sabah, Malaysia, in the
South China Sea (Fig. 1). Murphy is the operator of the field, which is
Malaysia’s first deepwater development.
The seafloor arrangement consists of 24 wells in a circular pattern roughly
150 ft in diameter with 20-ft spacing (Fig. 2). A spar and semisubmersible
tender assist rig will be mobilized to the batch-set location to finish the
drilling and completion operation.
Commonly encountered hazards in the area include shallow water flows (SWFs)
and hydrates. Bottom currents tend to be almost nonexistent and lead to
visibility challenges. Surface currents have not been a factor.
In April 2005, all 24 well locations were marked with marker buoys. The
buoys were positioned to form a 4-ft box around each location. Cement blocks
(no steel) were used for clump weight, and a 10-ft rope tether held the
flotation buoy to the block.
In May 2005, Slot 1 was drilled to provide additional geological data. This
well provided important information regarding the upper soils and hazard
confirmation, setting a benchmark for the remaining 23 wells to be batch set in
Six of the 23 wells would have only the conductor installed. The remaining
17 wells would have both the conductor and surface casing installed (Fig.
The Ocean Rover has worked for Murphy in Malaysia since July 2003 and has
provided exceptional value. The rig is conventionally moored, and it has a
single derrick, trip saver, large pump capacity, and 6,050-ton variable deck
load. More importantly, the personnel onboard the Ocean Rover have consistently
demonstrated a commitment to safety and a can-do attitude.
© 2008. Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- Original manuscript received:
12 October 2006
- Meeting paper published:
20 February 2007
- Revised manuscript received:
20 August 2007
- Manuscript approved:
12 February 2008
- Version of record:
15 September 2008