Positive change in geothermal drilling

A $42 million investment in a new on shore drilling rig keeps MB Century at the forefront of their industry. The new hydraulic hoist rig, under construction in Italy, is quieter, safer, smaller and more mobile than existing rigs in the company’s extensive suite of drilling equipment. Following its arrival in New Zealand this August, the rig will be commissioned in a three-rig drilling operation to continue Contact Energy’s geothermal development program near Taupō. A 30-month contract, recently signed between MB Century and Contact Energy, has a four year right of renewal and is considered significant in the industry.
Already a leader in the field of geothermal drilling and steam field design, MB Century is proud to bring new technology to New Zealand. “The new rig will revolutionise the way we undertake geothermal drilling operations,” says Deputy CEO Marcel Manders. “We’re committed to excellence, service and to providing quality and superior equipment. This new rig will be the most advanced in New Zealand. As well as having a smaller footprint, it integrates a range of hydraulic equipment and being largely automated, there is reduced risk and increased operating safety.”
Mr Manders says the new rig is faster to make operational, halving the number of days to that of existing rigs. As well, has the flexibility to operate in both geothermal and oil and gas environments and incorporates a range of cost effective and performance efficiencies. MB Century prides itself in offering their staff continued professional development and from mid-June people, selected from existing crews, will travel to Italy for simulated training in a range of operating and maintenance areas associated with the new rig. “It’s an exciting time for the drilling industry and our new rig gives staff an opportunity to advance their skills and develop professionally,” says Marcel Manders.