The Noble Bully I dynamically positioned drillship arrived in the Gulf of Mexico from a shipyard in Singapore and will drill development wells for Shell’s deepwater Mars B Olympus tension-leg platform in 900 m of water, after completing commissioning and acceptance testing during December.
The Noble Bully I is the first of two Bully rigs jointly designed by the Royal Dutch Shell Group and Noble Corp. Noble expects the second Bully rig to start drilling next year offshore Brazil.
Bully rigs can drill in up to 10,000 ft of water and feature a compact box-type drilling tower, known as a multipurpose tower, instead of a conventional derrick. Because of the tower, Bully rigs are much smaller vessels compared with other deepwater drillships with similar capacity, Noble said.
The tower allows for offline standbuilding and the racking of up to 950 tonnes (more than 48,000 ft) of drill pipe and casing on two carousel-type setbacks. The tower handles drill pipe and casing in 135-ft lengths.
The tower, rated for 2.4 million lb loads, has an active heave-compensated drawworks.