RC Baker Technology Vessel Exceeds Customer "Wish List"

HOUSTON, TEXAS (January 28, 2000) – Baker Oil Tools celebrated the launch of its latest technology vessel – MV RC Baker – in December with festive customer gatherings in Houston and New Orleans. Named for the founder of Baker Oil Tools, the 224-ft, dynamically positioned vessel was designed and built to provide the safest, highest-caliber pumping and stimulation support for the Gulf of Mexico operators.

The RC Baker is particularly well suited to support the company's much-demanded FRAQ PAQ, H2O FRAQSM, H2O PAQSM, and other stimulation processes, as well as horizontal gravel packing and multiple sand control projects. Key enabling features include: o 1 million pounds proppant capacity, with 250,000 pounds in four above-deck silo compartments and 750,000 pounds in five pneumatic below-deck tanks

o 8,000 HHP capability between five independent pumps, with capacity for increasing HHP as required

o 189,000 gallons of batch mix capacity

o Large open deck space that supports acidizing, solvent, nitrogen, CO2 and other large-capacity operations

o Computer-controlled fluids mixing and pumping to ensure the most accurate and efficient fluids and placement of stimulation treatments. Designed with operators in mind

The Holiday Season launch of the RC Baker was particularly appropriate, given the fact that design criteria for the vessel were based on a customer wish list compiled through surveys and one-on-one interviews. Key among requests fulfilled by the RC Baker are the convenient command center, laboratory and stateroom, and satellite-based remote data transmission capabilities that allow wellsite data to be transmitted to onshore locations (including clients' offices) in real time.

Operators had expressed a desire for more room in the command center and larger computer monitors. In response, the RC Baker includes an 816-sq-ft, stern-facing command center/laboratory on the "02" deck that provides a large working area with excellent visibility of on-deck operations. The command center houses the computers required for the ship's network, job monitoring and display. Among the hardware are seven large-screen monitors (five 21-in. and two 17-in. CRTs). Treatment data is displayed on the large-screen monitors, while a mimic board on the starboard wall of the room displays actual suction and discharge manifold and valve positions for all critical systems. The valves can be controlled from the mimic board.

The RC Baker is believed to be the only technology vessel in the Gulf with the Quality Control (QC) laboratory on the same deck level as the control room. The fluids laboratory is located adjacent to the command center for quick access to the facilities and vital test data. Also adjacent to the command center is a dedicated stateroom for the operating company representative.

Unique satellite service makes ship-to-shore communications "as easy as with the office next door". As part of Baker Oil Tools' efforts to make all communication systems aboard the RC Baker the most reliable and efficient possible, ship-to-shore communications are enabled by a unique, 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week satellite link with 128k bandwidth for four phone lines and a fulltime network connection. "It's as easy as communicating with the office next door, and you don't get thrown off the network during peak traffic," commented one happy customer.

The satellite servicer provides a primary satellite and a smaller, alternate satellite in a different azimuth location, so service can continue uninterrupted even when the boat is positioned such that the rig structure blocks the direct path to the primary satellite. Backup communications are provided by cellular phone.

Advanced dynamic positioning and extra safety features

Safety drives every aspect of the design and operation of the RC Baker. The vessel's advanced dynamic positioning system uses a global positioning system (GPS), with redundancy provided by radio frequency and manual mode. The 800-megahertz radio frequency communications allow the boat to stay in tandem with the rig's range of movement at all times.

A purpose-built, 12-in. steel I-beam grid framework on the main deck is connected to the ship's frame to secure the frac pumps, blender, chemical additive system, proportional mixing unit, and accessory support equipment. The grid, with its sturdy fiberglass decking, also serves as a false floor, under which pipes, hoses and cables are run. As a result, the deck is kept free of clutter and provides safe footing for the crew. An elevated landing platform at the rear of the vessel provides a safe place to land the personnel transfer basket. An elevated catwalk provides a safe, convenient passageway between the landing platform and crew quarters.

An additional safety feature of the RC Baker is its dust collection system, which ensures that no dust is emitted from sand stored or used on the vessel. Fluid systems and additives are environmentally friendly. The RC Baker joins the MV Republic Tide, which was commissioned by Baker for Gulf of Mexico marine support operations in 1998, and like its predecessor, it is outfitted for speed, flexibility and maximum stability in inclement weather.

Baker Oil Tools is a world leader in total completion, workover, and fishing solutions that help exploration and production companies optimize their hydrocarbon recovery investment. Baker Oil Tools solutions are based on advanced downhole and surface technology, practically applied, to help operators produce at the highest levels and the lowest cost throughout the life of the reservoir.