This paper discusses the three basic support-supply systems available to an operator when drilling offshore in remote, undeveloped areas of the world. These are

  1. operate from a far distant port;

  2. construct one's own share base;

  3. use a wareship.

Each of these alternatives are discussed in detail, reviewing the various facets of support logistics for various cases. A cost comparison of the three alternatives for a typical one well and two well program are given. Some examples of Amoco Production Company's experience using wareships are discussed and advantages, other than cost, are listed.


One of the major considerations, and often the most difficult, in mobilizing to drill an offshore exploratory well in a remote area is how to support and supply the drill rig. A remote area is one which is undeveloped or lacks adequate port and dock facilities and local infrastructure to provide a shore base. It is generally more than 150 nautical miles (278 km) distance from suitable port facilities. In these circumstances there are basically three alternative supply systems available to the operator:

  1. operate from the far distant port;

  2. build his own shore base;

  3. use a wareship.

This paper will examine each of these alternatives in detail and compare the overall costs for each. Amoco Production Company has used up to two wareships to support remote area operations in various regions of the world since 1974. Amoco's experience with their use is discussed later in the paper. Wareships provide advantages other than lower cost which will paper. Wareships provide advantages other than lower cost which will become evident within the paper.

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