Engineers and drillers working on the rig. — Photo courtesy of PVN
HÀ NỘI — Võ Văn Phúc used to wake up at night and check his phone all the time, worried there may be a message indicating a problem at work.
When your job in on board oil drilling rig operating off the coast of southern Việt Nam, those problems can be catastrophic.
That habit was formed when Phúc, deputy head of the PVD Deepwater Drilling Ltd.Co’s Drilling Management Office, was in charge of managing the operation of the Semi-submersible Tender Assist Drilling Rig (TAD) or the PV Drilling V for the Biển Đông (East Sea) 01 project to exploit two gas and condensate fields.
The successful construction of the PV Drilling V is considered an outstanding achievement of the oil and gas sector of Việt Nam as it is the first TAD rig in the world applying high technology for drilling high pressure and high temperature wells.
It is known as the first TAD Rig in the world that built with the rig’s load up to 1.500.000lbs so that it is capable of operating at 30.000ft (9100m) max drill depth at the water depth of up to 4000ft (1200m).
It also that the rig required great efforts and skills from experts and technicians to operate.
Phúc said during the five years of the drilling process, his phone had to be active around the clock to get updated information from the oil rig. He had to check on the phone every night in order to handle any problem emerged at the oil rig quickly.
“With just a moment of distraction, if a problem suddenly happens and we cannot handle, it would leave severe consequences,” he said.
During the day, it often took Phúc and his colleagues at least two hours to meet and discuss working plans and results every day.
“That became part of my life,” he said.
When the drilling for the Biển Đông 01 project successfully ended in 2016, that rhythm of life no longer existed but Phúc could not forget that period and was still proud of working during it.
The Biển Đông 01 project is considered an important achievement of the oil and gas industry of Việt Nam in the East Sea. The project was developed by the group to exploit two gas and condensate fields – Hải Thạch and Mộc Tinh with duration expected to be 25 years and a capacity of 8.5 million cubic metres of natural gas per day. Its success proved the potential of the industry and contributed to partly ensuring the national energy security.
Drilling at Hải Thạch and Mộc Tinh gas and condensate fields was considered as a decisive factor for the success of the Biển Đông 01 project because these areas have special complicated geology.
In 2009, there was no rigs in Việt Nam that could meet drilling conditions at Hải Thạch and Mộc Tinh gas and condensate fields. As a result, the PV Drilling Company had two options – hiring a drilling rig from abroad or building a new one.
However, at that time, there were only seven TAD drilling rigs in the world but no rigs meeting conditions of high temperature and high pressure at the two gas fields. If these rigs were hired, they needed to be upgraded to meet the drilling requirements. Meanwhile, each rig was leased at a cost of US$500,000 per day.
The decision was made to build their own. This was considered a plan with the best economic efficiency. The building of the PV Drilling V would not only serve the drilling of the Biển Đông 01 project but also for other oil exploitation projects in the future.
The PV DRILLING V is considered the most modern TAD drilling rig in the world at present with many new, modern and complicated equipment and technology. — VNS