Transocean has three “Sedco Express” class semi-submersible rigs that are unique in design and each has two “Riser Handling Assemblies” fitted under the horizontal beams in the top of the derrick structure.  These RHA systems are used for lifting, handling, make-up and breaking-up of riser joints during the assembly and disassembly of the riser string on a drill rig.

After eight years of intense operation and based on stringent safety requirements, these RHA’s were required to be completely stripped down, inspected and refurbished under the supervision of the original equipment manufacturers and Transocean.

Two RHA’s from the rig Sedco Energy were shipped from West Africa to Belmet and together with the Transocean project team these large 40 tonne machines were disassembled and then rebuilt.  Each individual component was removed, cleaned, inspected, tested, repaired or replaced, painted and then reassembled.

Belmet fabricated various items on this project using imported materials and this fabrication also included a new transport frame.  Belmet either supplied or facilitated the electrical, hydraulic and machining work for the project.  Being based at the Belmet Head Office in Cape Town, full logistical support including offices, telecommunications, accommodation and transport was provided to the project team.

Ultimately 180 tonnes of refurbished equipment was then air freighted to the Gulf of Mexico for deployment onto one of the Sedco Express sister rigs.

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