Q1: David, could you just talk us to the rig audit and what it all means?
A1: So, it’s been a long process. It’s a very detailed inspection of every system in the rig so they go through everything from the top drive, the iron roughneck, the high pressure mud systems, the low pressure mud systems, and of course, importantly the rig engine itself. They’ve gone through a very detailed inspection of every single component.
The inspection itself was completed about a week and a half ago, we only got the final report last week, and we were able to put an RNS out on Monday morning because the result of this inspection has been that the rig is deemed as now fit for purpose and ready for field operation.
The final stage of the inspection was an 8-hour high pressure test where they put the rig under 2,000 PSI pressure to stimulate depths and pressures beyond which we are expecting to anticipate and meeting at Rukwa.
So it’s passed that, all of components work as a system, the rig is in a good condition and it’s ready to go.
Q2: Why is this rig so good for Helium One’s programme?
A2: So, the Epirock Predator 220 is really the perfect rig for the remote working operation so it’s a lightweight truck mounted conventional oil and gas rig. The truck mounting is important because it means it’s very easy to move it and to mobilise it to remote locations and to move it between well locations. Despite being lightweight and small size, the rig is heavyweight in terms of its capability, it has a 950 horsepower engine and the mass is rated to 100 tonnes. That means it’s able to drill 8.75 inch hole all the way down to 2,500 meter. This is more than capable of achieving everything that we need in a cost effective, timely manner.
Q3: What are the next steps for Helium One?
A3: The next steps is the mobilisation, and we have a team in Kenya at the moment working on that work. The plan is to get the rig into into Tanzania ahead of a rainy season so we can set it up with mast up, waiting for the Baker Hughes equipment to be released from its current operations in Africa. The latest on that is that’s scheduled to be released in December so it looks like we’re all set to go for a January or February start date as planned.