The S.C. Llancer

The SC Lancer is a dynamic positioning drill ship with a lengthy history of activity that spans back to when it was first delivered on March 28, 1977. Built by the defunct firm of Scotts Shipbuilding at the Glasgow, Scotland shipyard, it was designed as part of the Gusto Engineering Pelican Class.

Originally named the Ben Ocean Lancer, the ship is used by oil companies despite its relative limitations. These include possessing a maximum water depth of 5,000 feet and drilling depth of 20,000 feet. Currently flying under the flag of Panama, the ship has a diesel-electric engine and was given its current name in 1990. It has a length of 505 feet, a beam of 83 feet and a draught of 26 feet.

In its earliest years, the ship endured some rough winter weather while drilling in frozen areas of Canada. The most dramatic interaction with the climate came when it was forced to navigate its way through rough seas and swells that caused the ship to heave 25 feet near Newfoundland. While things got as bad as seas of between 40 and 50 feet along with 70-knot winds, the ship managed to make its way back.

The financial woes of the parent company of the SC Lancer, Schahin, and the continuing glut when it comes to commodities like oil, forced a shutdown of the ship in April 2015 by its current contractor, Brazilian oil giant Petrobras. The Lancer was one of five Schahin ships to suffer this fate, with the company officially filing for bankruptcy later that same month as a result of losing one of its few sources of cash flow.

Though the ship remains viable for use at some point in the future, it’s currently located in Indonesia, awaiting new developments in the oil market.