Santa Fe To Establish Base In Amsterdam At Cost Of $6 Million

Santa Fe International Corp., Orange, Calif., has announced plans to expand its ocean diving services with the establishment of a base in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and the outfitting of four pipeline and construction vessels with deepwater saturation diving systems.

E. L. Shannon Jr., Santa Fe president, said new systems rated for dives to 1,500 feet will be installed on Choctaw II, Creek and Viking Piper, all operated by Santa Fe subsidiaries in the North Sea, and the company's pipelay reel ship Apache, now under construction in Galveston, Texas. The new diving equipment is scheduled to be operational by February 1979.

Victoria Machine Works, Victoria, Texas, has been awarded a contract for more than $2,000,000 to construct the initial high-pressure vessels for the four units.

Overall cost of the expansion program is estimated at more than $6,000,000 for diving systems, onshore equipment, and the establishment of the operations base in Amsterdam.

With the North Sea equipment, Santa Fe will have six deepwater saturation diving systems. T first Cachalot-type system has been operated by a Santa Fe subsidiary in the Gulf of Mexico since 1976, and a similar unit is under construction for installation on the company's Choctaw I in the North Sea. Both of these systems are designed for dives to 1,000 feet.

Tom M. Angel, Santa Fe diving manager, said the new systems will be similar to the earlier models, except that they are designed for 50-percent greater depth capabilities.

Support equipment on the North Sea vessels will include blending facilities to provide the helium-oxygen breathing media needed for deep dives. Each vessel also will have storage capacity for 150,000 cubic feet of gas.

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