Athens Group Services Surveyors provides comprehensive development, management, and execution of a global multi-rig selection and acceptance program
A major operator was implementing a multiyear program to select and accept multiple drilling rigs and types for an aggressive global drilling campaign. To ensure consistency and quality of rig performance, the operator intended to develop and execute a common comprehensive rig acceptance test plan across the selected rigs and types. Twelve rigs were eventually selected including jackup, drillship, and TLP types.
Athens Group Services surveyors were engaged at the start of this program to provide specialists to assist in the development of the common acceptance test plan and then to deploy dedicated teams of surveyors to execute these plans on each selected rig. The test plans covered all vessel systems including drilling, well control, fluids and bulk handling, marine, vessel and power management, station keeping, quality management and HSE, control systems, and cybersecurity. Rigs were located in the Middle East, West Africa, North and South America.
Athens Group Services surveyors specialists worked with the operator and contractor teams to ensure the test plans were fit for purpose and aligned with the requirements of both teams. Using a common acceptance program, consistent operator coordinator, and dedicated survey teams allowed best practices for both inspection and operations to be uncovered and then shared across the rig fleet.
Athens Group Services surveyors deployed surveyor teams ranging from 3 to 5 resources with specialist expertise in project management, DP and station keeping, well control and BOP, drilling and controls, mechanical, electrical, and vessel management, marine and safety. These surveyors operated as integral members of the operator and contractor teams and shared the common goal of executing a safe, efficient, and effective acceptance program.
Deployment logistics were complicated by pandemic-related visa and entry requirements which were changing in real time. Athens Group Services surveyors’ logistics team worked closely with the client and regional authorities to ensure the teams were successfully deployed.
As a result of the common rig acceptance program, results across the rigs and geographies were similar and all exceed prior performance results. Results included successful mobilization and demobilization of the survey teams thanks to cooperative real time management of pandemic and visa requirements, no recorded safety incidents thanks to the early establishment of a strong offshore safety culture, rig NPT below 1%, successful introduction of managed pressure drilling, and mobilization and demobilization on the drill site according to schedules.
A related outcome of the use of common acceptance plans and dedicated teams has allowed successive acceptance projects to become more effective and efficient as they incorporate learnings from prior projects.