Ultradeepwater drillship spuds first well

Dean E. Gaddy Drilling Editor The Deepwater Pathfinder ultradeepwater drillship, owned by a venture of Conoco Inc. and R&B Falcon Corp., is shown drilling its first well, on the Magnolia prospect in the Garden Banks area of the Gulf of Mexico. Photo by Dean Gaddy. Conoco Inc.'s and R&B Falcon Corp.'s next-generation drillship, the Deepwater Pathfinder, spudded its first well Jan. 30 in the Gulf of Mexico. This is the second ultradeepwater (5,000 ft of water) drillship to enter the gulf fleet since the Glomar Explorer began work in August 1998. According to Offshore Data Services, about $9.8 billion will be invested in ultradeepwater floaters...

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