Norway’s IKM Group will provide a riserless top-hole mud circulation system to Shell on the Malikai project offshore Sabah, Malaysia.
This contract award is an important milestone for IKM’s MRR technology (Mud Recovery without Riser) and will mark the first application for MRR outside the North Sea, IKM said in a press release.
For Malikai, Shell will utilise the “Norshore Atlantic” drill-ship to batch drill 8 top-holes in a water depth of 475m. The drilling fluids will be collected at the wellhead and pumped back to the vessel using IKM’s MRR, enabling the use of engineered drilling fluids. This method of top-hole drilling delivers minimal environmental impact with no discharge of drilling fluids, reduces risk, and provides mud logistics benefits and associated cost efficiency.
The contract will be between Sarawak Shell Berhad / Sabah Shell Petroleum Company Limited and IKM Energy Services Sdn Bhd, and operations are expected to commence during August 2014.
The MRR is a 2nd generation riserless mud recovery technology, incorporating the latest advances in safe working, operational performance and cost efficiency. The system has been developed to reduce the deck footprint, the number of offshore personnel, and the overall cost of top-hole mud recovery operations, and therefore expand the utilisation of such systems in mainstream drilling operations.
Tom Hasler, Managing Director of IKM Cleandrill AS, the specialist mud recovery subsidiary of IKM Group, says: “IKM is excited to win this important contract from Shell, and to work as part of an integrated team on board the “Norshore Atlantic”. We believe that using a specialist top-hole vessel and IKM’s MRR system can offer significant advantages to clients with multi-well development projects. This project adds to IKM Group’s extensive operations in Malaysia and the Asia Pacific region, and will showcase the operational and commercial benefits of the MRR system.”