Southwest Marine Yard Completes Renovation Of Rowan Jackup Rig

The Southwest Marine, Inc. shipyard in San Pedro, Calif., lost a landmark recently but gained a satisfied customer. The drilling rig Rowan Alaska has towered over the buildings, boats, and even big ships in the SWM yard for more than a year. As one skipper on the docks put it: "The Rowan Alaska has become sort of a landmark around here. No matter how big or small your boat was, you could always use the rig to navigate by .. . you could tell right where the yard was for miles away." Based out of Houston, the Rowan Alaska has spent the past year in the SWM San Pedro yard having its leg sections extended by 100 feet for use in undersea oil fields that were previously inaccessible to this rig.

Owned by the Rowan Companies, Inc. of Houston, the rig is 210 feet long and 200 feet wide on the pontoon deck. Its three original 310-foot leg sections were extended to 410 feet, allowing the rig to now drill in up to 300 feet of water to a depth of 30,000 feet below the ocean floor.

The huge rig began a 30-day journey from San Pedro to Houston in dry tow with its sister rig, the Rowan Middletown, on the heavy lift ship Sibig Venture. From Houston, the Alaska will be dry-towed to Africa for drilling in the oil fields off that Continent's South Coast.

Other stories from May 1985 issue


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First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.