Offshore Drilling Rig Completes Recertification, Ready for Nigeria Contract

Offshore drilling firm Dolphin Drilling said Monday that its offshore drilling rig Blackford Dolphin had completed a five-year recertification and "is soon ready" to start its 12-month drilling contract with General Hydrocarbons Limited.

The Blackford Dolphin has completed its recertification for a new five-year period in Las Palmas, Spain, following its recent arrival from Mexico. Earlier this month, Dolphin Drilling said that the capital cost related to the special periodic survey was in line with the budget of $15 million.

The semi-submersible drilling rig will now be towed to Nigeria, and is expected to start its 12-month drilling contract with General Hydrocarbons Limited in early March 2023.

Dolphin Drilling said at the beginning of January that the Blackford Dolphin had been given a letter of award for more work in Nigeria.

This additional work will take effect in direct continuation of the previously secured $96 million contract with General Hydrocarbon Limited (GHL).

Dolphin said earlier this month that the new award could add between 120 days and 485 days to the rig's backlog, in addition to the existing GHL backlog. 

Including the mobilization fee, the effective dayrate associated with the minimum firm period of the LOA is $325,000, the drilling firm said.

The semi-submersible drilling rig was built in 1974, however, according to Blackford Dolphin's spec sheet, the rig underwent significant upgrades in 2008.

The rig has a maximum operating water depth of 6,000 feet (1829 meters) and a maximum drilling depth of 30,000 feet (9,144 meters).

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