New Drilling Contract Signed for The Deep-Sea Scientific Drilling Vessel, CHIKYU with Japan Petroleum Exploration Co., Ltd.
JDC and Japan Petroleum Exploration Co., Ltd. (JAPEX) have signed a 2.8 billion yen contract to drill wells in the East Nankai Trough. The contract is for a methane hydrate test production program conducted by METI's Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, and will be the world's first offshore methane hydrate production test. The Deep-Sea Scientific Drilling Vessel, CHIKYU, owned by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) and operated by JDC, will drill one (1) observation well and one (1) test well. The operation will commence in mid-January 2013.