, Inc. took delivery of its newest jack-up rig, the Bob Palmer on August 18. The rig's initial assignment will be to drill a 25,000 foot well in the Gulf of Mexico, which should begin within 30 days.
The Bob Palmer is an enhanced version of our Super Gorilla class jack-up, designated a Super Gorilla XL. The rig is outfitted with 713 feet of leg, 139 feet more than Gorillas V, VI or VII, and has 30% larger spud cans enabling operation in the Gulf of Mexico in water depths up to 550 feet. The Bob Palmer will also be able to operate in water depths up to 400 feet in the hostile environments offshore eastern Canada and in the North Sea.
Rowan financed $187 million of the rig's design and construction costs through an 18-year bank loan guaranteed by the U. S. Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration under its Title XI Program. The loan bears a floating rate of interest which, as of July 31, 2003, was approximately 1.38% per annum.