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First Subsea Invests in Test Rig for Mooring Connectors (UK)

Subsea mooring connector (SMC) specialist, First Subsea has invested over £200,000 in new mooring connector test rig facilities at its production site in Lancaster, UK.

The test-rig is being used in the manufacture of ‘next generation’ SMCs for industry leading, deepwater mooring projects: the Jack & St Malo field’s semi-submersible platform and Lucius field’s Spar moorings, both in the Gulf of Mexico.

The SMC test rig is used for proof load and Minimum Breaking Load (MBL) testing up to 2,600mT (25,497 kN).

‘Next Generation’ Mooring Connectors

First Subsea leads the world in research into large scale steel forgings. In collaboration with the University of Sheffield’s Institute for Microstructural and Mechanical Process Engineering (IMMPETUS), the company has systematically improved the performance of its mooring connectors. The metals forging research is now being applied to the manufacture of the company’s latest Ballgrab Series III male connectors – the largest produced so far with an un-corroded 2,599mT (25,491kN) MBL, and compliant with the ABS Mooring Guide 2009.

“This is a significant investment that will ensure our Ballgrab subsea mooring connector continues to set the standard for deepwater moorings,” says John Shaw, managing director, First Subsea Ltd.

First Subsea Invests in Test Rig for Mooring Connectors (UK)| Offshore Energy Today.

Israel: Pinnacles Delivers First Gas

Israel’s  Delek Group has been informed by the operator, Noble Energy Mediterranean Ltd., that on June 12, 2012, development of Pinnacles #1 was completed and gas began to flow from it.

Pinnacles offshore well was recently linked by a subsea pipeline to the nearby Mari B production platform. Helix ESG’s reeled pipelay vessel, Express, which in April arrived at the port city of Haifa, Israel, completed the SURF (Subsea Umbilicals, Risers and Flowlines) work.

According to the Israel-based financial newspaper The Globes, Pinnacles well will produce 150 million cubic feet of gas per day.

Noble Energy Mediterranean Vice President Lawson Freeman told The Globes that the company was excited to bring the Pinnacles well on stream. He also added that the company was pushing hard to accelerate the Noa development in the same way.

Development of the Noa field is geared to allow for additional supplies of natural gas to the Israeli market, until the start of natural gas supplies from the Tamar project in early 2013.

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Port Lavaca, Texas: Excelerate Developing First U.S. FLSO

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Excelerate Energy® L.P. is moving forward with the development of the first floating liquefaction facility in the United States utilizing its Floating Liquefaction Storage Offloading vessel (FLSO™) technology.

The Lavaca Bay LNG project will be located in Port Lavaca, situated between Galveston and Corpus Christi on the Texas Gulf Coast, and will be designed to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) to markets worldwide by 2017.

Excelerate Energy’s FLSO comprises 3 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of production capacity, 250,000 cubic meters (m3) of LNG storage, and a fully integrated gas processing plant. With this gas processing capability, the FLSO can accommodate a wide range of gas compositions at its inlet making it well suited for virtually any application near shore or offshore. For those situations where gas processing is not required due to presence of existing processing facilities or where pipeline quality gas is used as the feedstock, the processing equipment can be removed and liquefaction capacity increased to 4 MTPA.

The FLSO will measure 338 meters in length, with a breadth of 62 meters. Front End Engineering and Design (FEED) is in an advanced phase and Excelerate is now entering into discussions with potential off takers and natural gas suppliers as well as investors and potential sources of finance to take the project forward. Excelerate Energy expects FEED to last until the end of 2012, and following its completion and successful permitting project delivery will take approximately 44 months from final investment decision (FID).

In its initial phase, the Lavaca Bay LNG project will consist of one permanently moored FLSO with multiple connections to the onshore natural gas grid in South Texas. The project will be designed with the potential for expansion and the addition of a second FLSO over time for a total production capacity of up to 8 MTPA. Excelerate Energy expects to begin the export authorization and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) permitting immediately, and is in the process of completing its site-specific final front-end engineering design (FEED) effort.

“Excelerate Energy applies the same philosophy to its liquefaction vessel design as it does to its regasification vessel fleet – essentially using proven technology in an innovative way to provide more efficient and timely solutions to the LNG industry,” stated Rob Bryngelson, Excelerate Energy President and CEO. “Port Lavaca provides us with the unique opportunity to further capitalize on our position as a market leader in floating LNG solutions.”

Excelerate Energy selected Port Lavaca for the site of the facility because of its direct access to the highly liquid south Texas natural gas market, access to the Atlantic Basin through the Gulf of Mexico, and potential access to the Pacific basin with the widening of the Panama Canal. The facility will interconnect to the region’s existing pipeline system in order to obtain natural gas and liquefy it onboard the vessel. The Port Lavaca location being developed by Excelerate Energy has previously received FERC approval as an LNG import facility, which should facilitate the permitting process.

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First Oil Flows at Caesar/Tonga Field in U.S. GoM

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Anadarko Petroleum Corporation , as operator, today announced first production at the Caesar/Tonga development in the Green Canyon area of the deepwater Gulf of Mexico.

Production from Caesar/Tonga, with an estimated resource base of 200 to 400 million barrels of oil equivalent (BOE), is expected to ramp up to approximately 45,000 BOE per day from the first three subsea wells. A fourth development well is expected to be drilled and completed later this year, as part of the planned Phase I development.

“We are excited to announce we began producing high-quality oil from the Caesar/Tonga development on March 7, 2012; an outstanding accomplishment by our project team consisting of co-owners, our employees and contractors,” said President and Chief Operating Officer Al Walker. “Our ability to safely achieve cost savings of almost $1 billion by leveraging our existing, operated infrastructure in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico continues to demonstrate the value of our hub-and-spoke approach to exploration and development. Caesar/Tonga is yet another capital-efficient, deepwater project in our Gulf of Mexico portfolio that we have successfully developed. This development and the Gulf of Mexico are an important part of Anadarko’s liquids growth and our domestically produced energy.”

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Anadarko’s First Flow Test Offshore Mozambique Successful

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Anadarko Petroleum Corporation today announced the results of its first flow test offshore Mozambique. The Barquentine-2 well flowed at an equipment-constrained rate of 90 to 100 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d), with minimal pressure drawdown, providing confidence in well designs that are capable of 100 to 200 MMcf/d.

“The test at Barquentine-2 exhibited exceptional flow characteristics, confirmed the deliverability of this reservoir and indicated a low density of development wells may be sufficient to produce the reservoir,” Anadarko Sr. Vice President, Worldwide Exploration, Bob Daniels said. “Using pre-set gauges in an offset well, we were able to confirm connectivity and reservoir continuity over a distance of more than 3 kilometers. The test also proves the reservoir has very high permeability, meeting the quality specifications for the partnership’s LNG development plans. This is a very encouraging way to start our testing program, which is an important component in the reserve certification process, as we focus on achieving FID (final investment decision) around the end of 2013.”

The Barquentine-2 well is located in water depths of approximately 5,400 feet (1,650 meters) in the Offshore Area 1 of the Rovuma Basin. The drillstem test was conducted by the Deepwater Millennium drillship, which is expected to be mobilized to the Barquentine-1 location for a second flow and interference test in the complex. The 2012 testing program also includes drillstem tests in the Lagosta and Camarao areas to the south of Barquentine.

Anadarko is the operator of the 2.6-million-acre Offshore Area 1 with a 36.5-percent working interest. Co-owners in the area are Mitsui E&P Mozambique Area 1, Limited (20 percent), BPRL Ventures Mozambique B.V. (10 percent), Videocon Mozambique Rovuma 1 Limited (10 percent) and Cove Energy Mozambique Rovuma Offshore, Ltd. (8.5 percent). Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos, E.P.’s 15-percent interest is carried through the exploration phase.

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Saudi Aramco Ready to Spud its First Deepwater Well in Red Sea

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Saudi Arabia’s state run oil giant, Saudi Aramco, has decided that the company is ready for deepwater exploration in the Red Sea.

 

At the Ceraweek 2012 conference in Houston, Amin H. Nasser, Senior vice president, Upstream Operations in Saudi Aramco, unveiled the company’s plans to start the Red Sea deepwater drilling operations by the end of 2012.

“We are optimistic about the potential for significant discoveries. We expect to start drilling in the deepwater by the end of this year,” Dow Jones quotes Nasser as saying.

Nasser, who joined the company in 1982, said that Saudi Aramco was working to increase its oil recovery levels from 50% to 70% in the years to come. He also highlighted the importance of deepwater and shallow water drilling in the company’s long-term plan to unlock “at least 100 million barrels of energy resources within the Saudi Arabian kingdom in the next several decades,” Dow Jones reports.

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