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Putin launches exploration drilling at West Alfa rig in Arctic Kara Sea

August 09, 2014, 14:08 UTC+3 SOCHI
Russia’s President via a TV link-up has launched exploration drilling at the West Alfa
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© ITAR-TASS/Alexei Druzhinin

SOCHI, August 09, /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin via a TV link-up has launched exploration drilling at the West Alfa rig in the Arctic Kara Sea.

The launch ceremony featured Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin and ExxonMobil Russia head Glen Waller.

Russia’s northernmost well, the Universitetskaya-1, will be drilled in open water during the ice-free drilling period from August to late October. The West Alfa semi-submersible rig has been specially upgraded for the Kara Sea’s harsh climate.

The West Alfa is equipped with an innovative ice control and ice defense system.

The well will be drilled by a joint venture between Rosneft, the license holder, and the U.S. ExxonMobil.

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