Maersk drillship gearing up for Namibian ultra-deepwater well

French energy major TotalEnergies is preparing to drill a wildcat well in waters offshore Namibia, using a Maersk Drilling-owned drillship.

According to the latest AIS data, the Maersk Voyager drillship departed Luanda, Angola on 14 November and is expected to reach Walvis Bay in Namibia later on Friday.

Before heading to Namibia, the drillship worked for TotalEnergies on the ultra-deepwater Ondjaba-1 exploration well in Angola’s Block 48. The work on Ondjaba-1 started in October 2021 and it was supposed to be drilled at a new world record water depth of 3,628 m. However, there are still no updates on the results of this Angolan well.

The 7th generation rig is now scheduled to work in Namibia and drill the ultra-deepwater Venus well and, after that, it has one one-well option remaining under its contract with TotalEnergies. The Maersk Voyager high-spec ultra-deepwater drillship was built by Samsung Heavy Industries in Geoje-Si, South Korea and it was delivered in February 2015.

In Namibia, TotalEnergies operates the deep offshore exploration Blocks 2913B (40 per cent interest) and 2912 (37.78 per cent interest). The Venus-1 well is located on Block 2913B. Africa Oil Corp., through its 30.9 per cent shareholding in Impact Oil & Gas, has exposure to the Venus-1 exploration well.

According to an update from Africa Oil earlier this week, the Venus-1 exploration well is expected to spud by the end of this year. Venus-1 will target a large basin floor fan system with significant undiscovered petroleum initially in place that has been identified using 3D seismic data.

As reported earlier this week, another Maersk-owned drillship recently completed operations for TotalEnergies, this time in Block 58 offshore Suriname. TotalEnergies and its partner APA Corporation completed a flow test at an appraisal well in the block, confirming an excellent quality black oil reservoir, but failed to find commercial hydrocarbons at the latest exploration well there.

In other related news, Maersk Drilling last week entered into an agreement to combine with rival Noble Corp., which will result in the creation of a combined company with a fleet of 20 floaters and 19 jack-up rigs.

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