Statoil has received consent to use Ocean Vanguard drilling rig for drilling a pilot hole at 16/2-U-7 in the Johan Sverdrup field, offshore Norway.
Johan Sverdrup field is located in the North Sea, about 36 km south of the Grane field, 56 km north-east of the Sleipner field (Sleipner Øst) and about 144 km west of Utsira municipality in Rogaland county. Water depth at the site is approximately 115 metres.
Drilling is planned to start during March 2014 with an expected duration of 7 days.
A pilot hole is drilled in order to maintain better control if shallow gas pockets are encountered. Pilot holes entail drilling wells in two steps; the first one with a small diameter. This makes it easier to control the pressure and prevent a major blowout.
Ocean Vanguard is operated by Diamond Offshore with operations offices in Stavanger and technical and operational support from the company’s office in Aberdeen. The drilling rig is registered in the Marshall Islands with Det Norske Veritas as the classification society. Ocean Vanguard was built in 1982 and received Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC) from the PSA in July 2004.