Rolls-Royce has won orders to supply propulsion systems for seven new drillships totaling close to £100 million, including options, from a variety of customers including Transocean. These ships will be built in the Samsung, Daewoo and Hyundai shipyards in Korea.
Rolls-Royce is the leading supplier of large thrusters to these specialist vessels, with a market share in excess of 70 per cent. Drillships typically operate in the oil and gas fields off the coasts of Brazil, West Africa and the Gulf of Mexico.
The propulsion systems are used to propel the vessels to and from drill sites and accurately maintain their positioning during drilling operations. Their high power is crucial in maintaining position and a drillship typically features six such thrusters. The thrusters are demountable, meaning they can be changed underwater, avoiding the downtime and expense of a visit to drydock.
Anders Almestad, Rolls-Royce, President – Offshore said: “We are proud to be a strategic partner in the continuing development of the world’s drillship fleets, and particularly delighted to reach the significant milestone of powering 100 of these highly specialised vessels which are at the forefront of oil and gas exploration. Rolls-Royce has the largest range of thrusters for this sector of the marine market, and we welcome our customers’ continued confidence in our technology, products and service.”
In addition to 100 drillships, Rolls-Royce has also delivered high-powered thrusters to 80 semi-submersible drilling rigs.