Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Happy New Year! Hope you all enjoyed the festive season with your family and loved ones.

I know that I have enjoyed it, and soon Chinese New Year approaches (therefore the title), leaving the Water Snake and entering the Fortune Horse.

Way too long has passed since I last wrote about our ”little” project down here in Singapore, so let’s see if I can’t get you all up to date on our progress, which is getting us ever closer to delivery of the first XLE.

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A lot of fine-tuning has been going on onboard XLE1, as well as commissioning of the various equipment is the order of the day. This requires careful attention to detail and equipment interactions, which demands a lot of attention from our site team, making sure that when we take over the rig, everything is in order and we can start operations as swiftly as possible.

We have amongst other things made a skidding test, verifying that all the structure and hydraulic systems necessary to move the roughly 4000T cantilever work as they should, and that we can reach the drilling envelope targets.

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One of the big milestones that has begun within this last month is the audits by the Norwegian Authorities (PSA). We have so far been audited with respect to Construction and Marine systems, and Health and Hygiene, and both audits have highlighted some items, which we need to address in order to achieve our Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC), our license to operate on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. The next couple of months will bring seven more audits, covering everything from drilling to working environment and technical safety, so we are definitely closing in on the home stretch.

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Since last I wrote, XLE2 has started getting its legs extended and the port side accommodation has been put in place, and is currently being welded to the hull and starboard side accommodation. Once that has been done, the helideck and its support structure can come on, leaving the legs as the last major building blocks.

Last but not least we have XLE3, which is still split into a few pieces. Most of the hull is in the dock, where it will stay for a little over a month while the last structural members and erection joints are completed. The forward leg well is being painted and will be ready to join the rest of the hull as soon as it is onboard the Can Do barge. The accommodation cantilever, drill floor and derrick are also progressing separately, until XLE3 stands on its own and can bare and balance the weight.

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As always it is busy times around here, but after a few days with family, friends and good food during the holidays, we are all up for the challenge of delivering the biggest jack-up in the world.

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