ExxonMobil to explore Turkish waters with drillship

ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Turkey BV plans to explore off Turkey next year with Deepwater Champion, a Transocean Ltd. drillship.

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor
LOS ANGELES, Mar. 19 -- ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Turkey BV plans to explore off Turkey next year with Deepwater Champion, a Transocean Ltd. drillship.

The Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in Ulsan, South Korea, is building the ship, expected to drill in the Turkish Black Sea during the first half 2011.

The Deepwater Champion is a sixth-generation drillship capable of drilling to 12,190 m in up to 3,660 m of water.

The vessel’s drilling derrick contains two drilling stations capable of a variety of simultaneous operations to improve efficiency.

The derrick has two removable sections for more efficient transit under the bridges spanning the Bosphorus Strait at Istanbul.

The double-hulled vessel is self-propelled and capable of holding its position in open water in 9-m waves and 60-knot winds.

ExxonMobil entered into an agreement with the Turkey’s state-owned TPAO in November 2008 to jointly explore deepwater prospects in the Samsun block of AR/TPO/3922 exploration license and the eastern portion of AR/TPO/3921 exploration license in the Black Sea.

In January 2010, ExxonMobil signed an agreement with Petrobras and TPAO to acquire a 25% interest in the Sinop, Ayancik and Çaramba sub-blocks of the AR/TPO/3922 exploration license (OGJ, Jan. 14, 2010).
Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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