Drill unit

Harland and Wolff (H&W) has secured a contract for the dry docking and renewal / special periodic survey of the Byford Dolphin Mobile Offshore Drilling Unit (MODU) from Aberdeen-based Dolphin Drilling.

After the completion of the sister rig Blackford Dolphin in 2014, the Byford project in Northern Ireland will commence in early 2015.

H&W and Dolphin Drilling will implement an integrated project organisation for the successful execution of the project, covering many disciplines, aspects and subcontractors.

This Aker-H3 design semi-submersible drilling rig will include many modifications and upgrades, including the fabrication and addition of two new columns and four buoyancy boxes for stability and deck load improvements, fitting of a larger blow out preventer (BOP) requiring underdeck stiffening and the fabrication and installation of a new BOP control house, and installation of new drill string handling equipment.

The project will also include several standard renewal and maintenance works, such as repairs, renewals and refurbishment of pipework, steelwork, anodes, drilling equipment, electrical systems, propulsion machinery and accommodation areas.

H&W has commenced an intense three-month period of pre-fabrication, which will involve the construction of new steel sections before the arrival of the rig.

"This is a significant project for H&W and for Northern Ireland."

H&W director of ship and offshore unit repair James Lappin said: "This is a significant project for H&W and for Northern Ireland.

"As well as employment opportunities, the supply chain within Northern Ireland will see significant activity in support of the project."

Dolphin Drilling managing director Graeme Murray said: "We are pleased to build upon the relationship with H&W following the work completed on the Blackford Dolphin and look forward to delivering the Byford back into service following a successful renewal survey, on time and within budget."

Image: The Byford project in Northern Ireland will commence in early 2015 after the completion of its sister rig the Blackford Dolphin in 2014. Photo: courtesy of Harland and Wolff Heavy Industries Limited.