Houston Chronicle


Not only are offshore drilling rigs become smarter and more automated, they are becoming greener and more energy independent.

Seadrill unveils its first hybrid-powered offshore drilling rig- oil and gas 360

Source: Houston Chronicle

Seadrill, an offshore drilling rig operator headquartered in Bermuda with its principal offices in London and Houston, has unveiled the company’s first hybrid offshore drilling rig – one that draws power from both diesel-fired generators and renewables-friendly battery storage technology.

In a Monday morning statement, Seadrill announced that the battery system for its West Mira offshore drilling rig were certified by the Norwegian registration and classification organization DNV GL as a battery energy storage system.

Charged by the rig’s diesel-electric generators, the batteries will be used for supplying power during peak load times. They will also serve as a backup to prevent blackouts and provide power to rig’s thrusters during an emergency.

“The installation of the energy storage system creating the first modern floating drilling rig in the world with a low emission hybrid power plant is a major achievement for Seadrill, its partners and the industry as whole,” Seadrill CEO Anton Dibowitz said in a statement. “This is an example of our sustainable business approach in action, as we strive for continuous improvement with environmental responsibility at the heart of our strategy.”

Seadrill worked closely with Northern Drilling, Siemens, Kongsberg Maritime and DNV GL to develop and test the system, which will allow the West Mira to lower its carbon footprint.

The company estimates that the runtime of the rig’s on-platform diesel engines will be reduced by 42 percent while carbon dioxide emissions will be cut by 15 percent and nitrogen oxide emissions will be reduced by 12 percent.

The announcement comes at a time when when several offshore drilling rig operators are seeking to boost automation and lower their carbon footprints.

In addition to Seadrill, competitors such as Switzerland-based Transocean and the offshore drilling arm of Danish industrial and shipping conglomerate Maersk have all been developing offshore drilling rigs that use storage batteries and other hybrid power technologies.

 


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