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The real thing
(Las Palmas): Espen Engebretsen came to Inocean in August this year after graduating from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). Last week the hydrodynamicist set foot for the first time on board the rig he has spent hours modelling and making calculations for.

“Seeing the dimensions with my own eyes was overwhelming,” says Espen. “Everything is tiny in the computer models. So it was fascinating for example to see that a grown person could fit inside even the smallest brace.”

Lightship survey 

The rig we are talking about is Eirik Raude (Ocean Rig). The semisub is currently at Zamakova Yards, just outside the centre of Las Palmas. The Inocean team, which in addition to Engebretsen consisted of Trond Høien and Miroslaw Lisiak, was on board to carry out a lightship survey.

This was no holiday. Getting up at 5 AM for a quick breakfast. Then the three-kilometre journey out to Muelle Dique Reina Sofia – the long, narrow pier where Eirik Raude is moored. Out there they donned their safety equipment and started the steep climb up one of the columns towards deck 1 – all amidst the hustle and bustle of the Las Palmas harbour area, with ferries, LNG carriers and container ships on their way in and out.

 Hands-on

“As a hydrodynamicist it’s my job to calculate motion on a very theoretical level,” says Engebretsen. “In Las Palmas I gained practical experience that will be useful in my future modelling jobs. There’s something special about a hands-on approach to what you’re working with. The light ship test demanded our crawling around the entire rig, from the helideck to the thrusters at the base of the pontoons. We became intimately acquainted with Eirik Raude. I got to see what the BOP (Blow-Out Preventor) looks like. I got a real impression of the rig’s systems and how they work together. And I witnessed the logistics on board, as well as the array of professions and disciplines involved in operations. These are all vital things to know in my daily work in Oslo. You get all the more motivated and inspired by such assignments,” concludes Espen Engebretsen.