jackup | Energy Glossary

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1. n. [Drilling]

A self-contained combination drilling rig and floating barge, fitted with long support legs that can be raised or lowered independently of each other. The jackup, as it is known informally, is towed onto location with its legs up and the barge section floating on the water. Upon arrival at the drilling location, the legs are jacked down onto the seafloor, preloaded to securely drive them into the seabottom, and then all three legs are jacked further down. Since the legs have been preloaded and will not penetrate the seafloor further, this jacking down of the legs has the effect of raising the jacking mechanism, which is attached to the barge and drilling package. In this manner, the entire barge and drilling structure are slowly raised above the water to a predetermined height above the water, so that wave, tidal and current loading acts only on the relatively small legs and not the bulky barge and drilling package.

See: bridgemobile offshore drilling unitTexas deck

Photograph of jackup rig.