April 30, 2014
by Simon Black via Sovereign Man blog,
Steve Jobs used to tell a very inspiring story about an article he read in Scientific American when he was a boy:
He said that the article measured the ‘efficiency of locomotion’ of various species– essentially how many calories different animals spend getting from Point A to Point B.
The most efficient of all? Not human beings. Not by a long shot. It was the condor. The condor expended the least amount of energy per meter or kilometer traveled. Human beings were pretty far down the list.
But as Jobs recounts, the authors had the foresight to also test the efficiency of a human being on a bicycle. And this absolutely blew all the other species away.
Jobs later said that this was incredibly influential on his thinking because he realized that human beings were fundamentally tool creators. We take our situation, however grim or rudimentary, and we make it better.
There’s undoubtedly a lot of bad news in the world these days. Some people realize it. Others refuse to believe it and stick their heads in the sand.
Our century-old monetary system is unraveling before our very eyes.
This absurd structure in which we award a tiny central banking elite with the dictatorial power to control the money supply in their sole discretion is now drowning the world in paper currency.
ALL financial markets are manipulated by central banks, predominantly the Federal Reserve. One woman– Janet Yellen– has the power to affect the prices of nearly everything on the planet, from the wholesale price of coffee in Colombia to the cost of a luxury flat in Hong Kong.
Moreover, politicians in some of the most ‘advanced’ economies in the world (Japan, the US, France, the UK, etc.) have accumulated so much debt that they have to borrow money just to pay interest on the money they have already borrowed.
They have indebted generations who will not even be born for decades.
They wage endless, costly wars. They spy on their citizens. They tell people what they can and cannot put in their bodies. They confiscate private property and wages at the point of a gun.
They abuse the population with legions of heavily armed government agents. They conjure so many codes, rules, regulations, laws, and executive orders that it becomes nearly impossible for an individual to exist without being guilty of some innocuous, victimless crime.
And they arrogantly masquerade the entire ruse as a free society.
This system is on the way out. It will reset.
Like feudalism before, our system will go the way of the historical dust bin. And future historians will look back (just as we view feudalism) and say “why did they put up with that nonsense…?
This reset is nothing to fear. Human beings are incredible creatures who have a long-term track record of growth. We rise. We progress.
Claxton, an Acteon company, which specializes in engineering and services for jack up environments, has presented its SABRE subsea abrasive cutting system.
The Claxton SABRE abrasive cutting system is capable of simultaneously severing all the casings in a well, regardless of casing loading, eccentricity or contents.
SABRE has proven an invaluable tool and has seen successful use on some of the most significant abandonment campaigns. SABRE’s abrasive jet exits the tool at transonic speeds – making light work of even composite materials such as cemented casings.
Using a jet of naturally occurring cutting components (garnet, water and air), SABRE has a low environmental impact. The system can be deployed from a vessel or platform, allowing simultaneous abrasive cutting of multiple well casings without impacting adjacent infrastructure.
Hydratight’s Mechanical Connectors (formerly known as MORGRIP™ mechanical connectors) are used subsea in diver depths for pipeline tie-in and spool repair.
The high performance products are designed to be simple and reliable to install with key diver-friendly design features, including “hands-clear” activation and external pressure test. No connector has ever proved impossible to install subsea, and none have ever failed in service. Hydratight’s Mechanical Connectors boast a 100% leak-free in-service record with over 2500 Connectors deployed to date.
For over 30 years, Hydratight’s innovative products and services have ensured the integrity of all types of flanges and mechanical connectors. Hydratight can trace its roots back to 1901 when the Sweeney business was founded in the United States. The company’s first torque tools appeared on the scene in 1949.
- UK: Balltec Reveals Helical Connector (worldmaritimenews.com)
- UK: Balltec Gets Project Recognition Award for MoorLOK Connectors (worldmaritimenews.com)
- FMC Technologies signs $33M subsea deal (bizjournals.com)
- Norway: Ulstein Unveils Next Generation of IMR Vessel (worldmaritimenews.com)
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.
2012 has seen SMD evolve the Q-series range of Work Class ROVs with extensive type testing carried out at the UK’s National Diving Centre at Stoney Cove, Leicester. The latest systems are configured to ensure SMD’s WROVs meet the demands and expectations of customers well into the future. Testing has successfully been carried out on the Atom which has been delivered to Bibby Remote Intervention and the first new Quantum (code named MkIII) recently delivered to Hallin.
The new Quantum uses many of the multi-platform Curvetech™ components first seen on the Atom. This gives SMD’s fleet customers interchangeable parts between systems.
It can interface as standard with the latest instruments such as high bandwidth sonars and high definition cameras. It uses the new single pedestal Curvetech™ HTE430 thruster for class leading bollard pull and high current operation. Available with a 200hp and 250hp HPU, the system comes with 245 LPM isolated tooling for demanding applications. A 350kg payload (after manipulators and core instrumentation is fitted) completes a package which cannot currently be matched for heavy WROV construction duties.
Topside, a revised cabin layout with monitor display options and increased space for third party survey equipment creates an ergonomic and pleasant environment for operators. SMDs DVECSII SCADA PLC control system gives operators advanced real time information on vehicle subsystems.
Mark Collins – SMD’s ROV Business Stream Manager commented:
“Through 2012 SMD have made significant progress re-vamping the Q-Series range. The recent Atom and Quantum trials were a huge success and we are now on track to complete trials of the new Quasar in December. The evolution of the SMD Work Class ROV brings increased versatility and flexibility to meet market demands into the future but also lower through life operating costs.”
Stoney Cove started life as a quarry, and first became popular with divers in the 1960s after it was abandoned and allowed to fill with water. The centre has been used for the testing of marine machinery since the 1970s. The facility offers depths of up to 35 metres, good visibility and good hard standing adjacent to the water, allowing loads of up to 20 tons to be deployed easily onto the water, not to mention the on-site pub!
Under the Technology License Agreement, BP will make available technical information that PEMEX E&P, one of four subsidiaries of PEMEX, can use, in addition to PEMEX E&P initiatives already in place, if it decides to build and maintain its own well capping system for use in Mexican waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
In addition, BP has agreed to conduct workshops in Houston to brief PEMEX E&P on the technical information and operational aspects of the system, as well as to introduce PEMEX E&P specialists to key vendors and fabricators that BP used to develop its global deepwater well cap and tooling package.
“The agreement marks another step forward in PEMEX E&P’s ongoing efforts to help protect the rich Gulf of Mexico environment in which we operate, as well as to apply state-of-the-art technology as we develop Mexico’s deepwater oil and natural gas resources,” said Carlos Morales, president of PEMEX Exploration and Production.
Richard Morrison, BP’s Head of Global Deepwater Response, said the agreement underscores BP’s commitment to sharing lessons learned during and following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident and response.
“Today’s announcement builds on our commitment and the work we have done — and continue to do — to help advance global deepwater response capabilities around the world,” he said.
“We are pleased to provide PEMEX E&P with access to our recent technological innovation and information so that operators in both the USA and Mexico areas of the Gulf of Mexico can be equipped to respond to a subsea well control incident in the Gulf of Mexico.”
BP’s global deepwater well cap is a 100-ton stack of valves that can be lowered onto a leaking well to halt the flow. The system can operate in 10,000 feet of water and is rated to pressures of 15,000 pounds per square inch. Stored in Houston, it can be sent by heavy-lift aircraft to any country where BP operates in a matter of days.
Under the Technology License Agreement, BP will share at no cost to PEMEX E&P technical information on BP’s capping stack, and PEMEX E&P has agreed to make any future advancements to this well-capping technology available at no cost to BP. BP will retain intellectual property rights, so it can continue to share the plans with others.
BP, which has had a presence in Mexico for around 50 years, has collaborated with PEMEX E&P through a variety of non-commercial technology, scientific and training mutual cooperation agreements over the last decade. Those have resulted in hundreds of workshops, seminars and exchanges to share best practices and technological expertise.
- Pemex Signs Deal to Use BP’s Well-Capping Technology in Gulf (ibtimes.com)
- Mexico Announces New Significant Crude Oil Discovery in Gulf of Mexico (hispanicallyspeakingnews.com)
Specialist bolt tensioner manufacturer Boltight Ltd has put together a new tool hire service that allows customers to trial hydraulic bolt tensioners, hydraulic nuts, pumps and ancillary equipment before making a final decision on whether to buy the equipment. The costs of hire can then be offset against the final purchase price.
The ‘try before you buy’ initiative has been launched in response to growing interest from companies from a wide range industry sectors who are contemplating making the switch from older types of legacy tools to the latest bolt tensioning technology.
Offshore oil and gas companies are increasingly using hydraulic tightening systems for subsea applications and working on compact flanges. The tools offer the end user a quick, precise and reliable means of bolt tensioning in difficult conditions, making it much easier to work quickly and achieve even flange and gasket compression.
Boltight’s tools are a popular choice because they are lightweight, easy-to-use, flexible and reliable. All the products are manufactured to exacting standards to strong and robust designs to ensure durability and a long operating life. The tools use the latest technology like low friction long life composite material seals that need little maintenance and simplify piston retraction. In addition, Boltight is able to provide comprehensive product and application support and technical back up at all times.
Explained Boltight director Fred Heaton: “We believe the best way to appreciate how far bolt tensioning technology has moved forward in recent years is to use these tools in a day-to-day workplace environment. Customers can conduct their own technical trials and compare our bolt tensioning tools with their existing equipment. If they like what they find, we can agree a special purchase price that takes into account the initial hire costs already incurred.”
- UK: Helix Well Ops Charters Skandi Constructor from DOF Subsea (mb50.wordpress.com)
- ReCoila hose reels integral to subsea works (recoila.wordpress.com)
Aberdeen-based Helix Well Ops UK (Well Ops), a business unit of international offshore energy company Helix Energy Solutions Group (Helix ESG), is expanding its Europe and Africa well intervention fleet with an investment that will create 60 jobs.
A leading global provider of subsea well intervention, Well Ops will take control of the mono-hull well intervention vessel Skandi Constructor in spring 2013, after agreeing a three-year charter with DOF Subsea.
The move to strengthen Well Ops’ regional fleet, which currently includes the 132-metre (433ft) long Well Enhancer and the 114-metre (374ft) long MSV Seawell, will lead to the creation of approximately 50 jobs offshore and a further 10 onshore over the next nine months. At the moment the firm employs 70 staff in Aberdeen and a further 300 offshore.
Launched in 2009, Skandi Constructor is a 120-metre (393ft) long Ulstein SX121 DP3 mono-hull well intervention vessel that features the new X-bow design. The 8,500-tonne vessel accommodates up to 100 personnel and is capable of working in depths of up to 3,000 metres (9,842ft). It has a deck capacity of 1,470 square metres (15,822 sq ft) and features an 8m x 8m (27ft x 27ft) moon-pool, a 150-tonne crane, a multi-purpose tower with 140-tonne lift capability and two work class ROVs.
Well Ops will build and test, ready for use, a specially designed version of its 7⅜” subsea intervention lubricator (SIL) to enable subsea well interventions to be undertaken from Skandi Constructor. The SIL is a single trip well intervention system that provides well access, while managing containment when the well is ‘live’ and under pressure. The SIL is configured to undertake work through all types of subsea xmas trees. The vessel and SIL will allow Well Ops to provide its regional clients with a solution for deeper water wells and well interventions, which to date has been limited within the mono-hull vessel market.
Steve Nairn, Well Ops’ regional vice president of Europe and Africa, said: “Well Ops is extremely proud to announce the addition of a third vessel to our fleet and it underlines our commitment to providing well intervention services. Skandi Constructor strengthens our offering internationally and expands our well intervention service capability.”
The need for a third vessel in Well Ops’ fleet has been driven by demand from operators in the North Sea and in other oil and gas producing provinces. The firm recently secured contracts from a number of the North Sea’s major operators to provide light well intervention and associated subsea services from its existing vessels between 2013 and 2015.
Internationally, it has also received strong interest from operators, particularly in West Africa. This follows Well Enhancer’s deployment to the region earlier this year, where it completed what was believed to have been the region’s first well intervention project from a mono-hull vessel.
Mr Nairn added: “This is an exciting time for the company and the demand that we are witnessing is illustrative of the level of service and expertise that we can offer clients. As operators continually seek to make their operations more time and cost efficient, it is encouraging that more are turning to mono-hull vessels to conduct well intervention work.
“Our experience of providing an alternative to rig-based intervention systems has been built up over 25 years. MSV Seawell helped to pioneer light well intervention in the North Sea and we have built on this over recent years with Well Enhancer, which was the first mono-hull vessel capable of delivering coiled tubing intervention.”
- WWCS, DOF Subsea Conduct Subsea Services in US Gulf Of Mexico (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Aker Bags Subsea Intervention Services Contract Offshore Angola (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Forum Subsea Deploys Perry T-1200 Trencher in UK (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Helix Energy Announces 2Q Income Report (USA) (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Solstad, Ocean Installer Order Subsea Construction Vessel from STX OSV (Norway) (mb50.wordpress.com)