InterMoor Completes Another Heave-Compensation Project in Gulf of Mexico

InterMoor, an Acteon company, has successfully completed a contract with Cross Group, Inc. that included the provision of heave-compensation services for the installation of a Cross 7.0 workover riser package (WRP). An InterMoor compensated anchor-handler subsea installation method (CASIM) unit played a key role in deploying and recovering the WRP.

CASIM-Configurations1“The CASIM system enabled us to provide effective heave compensation and to recover the delicate WRP on a vessel without an active heave-compensated crane or stern roller,” said InterMoor vice president of business development David Cobb. “That was the only way to achieve the WRP installation from this vessel. The success of this project underlines the value of the CASIM system as a cost- and time-effective solution, and explains why more and more subsea contractors and operators are choosing it to facilitate the installation of workover packages.”

Each standard CASIM unit has a maximum stroke of 3 meters and can accommodate loads up to 50 tons.

The heave compensation operation was in water depths of about 140 meters and used Cal Dive’s Uncle John DP saturation diving vessel to install the 29-ton WRP. The project took place at East Cameron well 378#3, offshore Louisiana, USA. The Cross Group is conducting a plugging and abandonment (P&A) program in the field for EPL Oil & Gas, Inc.

This project demonstrates how InterMoor can provide cost-effective solutions for the installation of subsea workover equipment using vessels of opportunity. Operators trust InterMoor to be part of their P&A campaigns and to help them meet BOEMRE NTL No. 2010-G05 requirements for timely decommissioning of idle infrastructure on active leases.

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BMT Awarded Patent for Revolutionary Approach for Subsea, Insulated Riser Strain Measurement

BMT-STRAIN-MEASUREMENT-SYSTEM

BMT Scientific Marine Services (BMT)a subsidiary of BMT Group Ltd, has been granted a patent forits strain measurement system and unique attachment scheme that can be integrated into the insulation layer on ultra-deep water Steel Catenary Risers (SCRs).

U.S. Patent No. 7,891,254 recognizes the device and method, invented by BMT’s riser engineers, that monitors strain on steel pipes with reduced or eliminated disruption of the insulation layer that covers the pipe.  The attachment scheme is less intrusive than previous strain monitoring solutions.

This technology was first deployed offshore in Nigeria to monitor bending strain and fatigue on production gas export risers in the Touch Down Zone (TDZ).   BMT will soon utilize this technology for two additional projects in Brazil.

Rod Edwards, Vice President, Business Development at BMT Scientific Marine Services comments: “BMT was motivated to develop this process by the demand for securely attaching strain sensors to deeply submerged insulated pipes -the outside dimensions of which change substantially under the influence of large swings in pressure and  temperature, particularly during installation but also during lifetime operations.”

He continues: “This behavior makes conventional clamping systems risky. We also sought to avoid attachment schemes that forced the removal of insulation in areas like the Touch Down Zone where regions of low temperature and scant insulation are unacceptable for flow assurance. Finally, being on the outside of the insulation maintained our sensors at a relatively constant temperature for optimum performance and stability.”

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Amarcon and GTT Signs Cooperation Agreement on Sloshing Prevention Technology

Amarcon, a member of the ABB group, announced that it has signed a cooperation agreement with GTT (Gaztransport & Technigaz) to market and further develop a forecasting and advice software system for sloshing prevention onboard LNG carriers. The agreement was signed at the LNG17 Conference & Exhibition in Houston,US.

In the coming years, a significant growth in the long distance transport of LNG is expected.GTT-Amarcon-Sign-LNG-Tanks-Deal Consequently, a considerable number of new build LNG carriers will come into the market. It is clear that the safe operation of these vessels will be imperative. To respond to this demand, last year Amarcon and GTT already announced the joint effort on development of sloshing prevention software for LNG Carriers. The sloshing prevention is an advanced module within Amarcon’s OCTOPUS advisory suite that will forecast and advise the crew with optimum route to achieve time savings while preventing risk for sloshing. Sloshing prevention will greatly boost the LNG tanker’s safe conditions and optimize the operational availability of the ships

“We are looking forward on working together with GTT in order to serve LNG carriers with a state of the art onboard sloshing advice, which will help crews to choose the route, speed and course with least risk for sloshing, so time savings can be achieved and damage to the LNG membrane tanks can be prevented. Also in the offshore LNG, we see large potential and need for this kind monitoring and advisory systems as a part of an asset management program” Leon, Adegeest, General Manager of Amarcon said.

GTT (Gaztransport & Technigaz) is a French engineering company formed in 1994 specializing in designing and licensing the construction of cryogenic LNG storage tanks for the shipbuilding industry.

Amarcon, a fully owned subsidiary of ABB, provides monitoring and forecasting software solutions for performance and availability optimization of sea-going vessels, and is the leader in vessel motion prediction solutions. ABB acquired Amarcon in august 2012 as an important step to expand its marine software offering. Today, ABB offers a wide range of marine advisory and optimization systems to the maritime and offshore market.

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Asset Guardian Solutions Ltd Awarded Key Contract by Stena Drilling Ltd

Asset-Guardian-Logo-Transparent-Background-Large-PNGAsset Guardian Solutions Ltd (AGSL), which specializes in protecting companies’ process critical software assets, announced that it has secured an important contract with Stena Drilling Ltd of Aberdeen, Scotland. This contract represents a significant development for AGSL, reinforcing its position within the Oil and Gas Drilling sector.

Managing and securing process critical software

As a result of this contract award, AGSL will provide Stena with Asset Guardian, its fully configurable process software management tool designed to meet the specific needs of Rig Control and Automation Systems. It will centralize Stena’s software and data storage into a single repository, improving workflow management, reducing risk and enhancing the ability to recover software and data should system failure occur, thus minimizing any negative impact on production.


Asset Guardian software will be installed on Stena’s entire fleet of drilling vessels. In addition toStenaDrilling2 providing a safer, more secure means of storing software and data management associated with each programmable system, Asset Guardian will also manage the process for making changes to the software configuration of these systems, ensuring compliance with industry standards, regulations and guidelines, such as IEEE 828 2005, CPNI, IEC61508, 61511, ISO 9001, and HSE KP4, among others.

The global nature of Stena’s business means that its drilling vessels and rigs are often required to operate in remote locations, sometimes with poor or intermittent access to the internet. To eliminate problems associated with poor communication links between remote locations and onshore facilities, AGSL will also provide AGSync, a solution specifically designed for the oil and gas industry which allows data and files to be seamlessly synchronized between locations.

The contract also provides for customization of the Asset Guardian system to Stena’s precise requirements, and migration of data from its existing system into Asset Guardian.

AGSL is also required to supply a third party review of Stena's process control management procedures and an annual audit of each offshore facility. These audits will include verification of software backups, validation of hardware and software records, and review of Stena's adherence to international standards and procedures.

Providing secure solutions to the oil and gas industry

The six figure contract from Stena Drilling is one of several recent contract awards to AGSL from companies operating in the oil and gas industry. Most recently, operator Woodside of Australia awarded AGSL a contract to provide a Programmable Systems Management tool set to provide enhanced management of its critical software assets. The company also welcomed contracts from BP, Marathon Oil UK and EON.

The agreement with Stena is a real breakthrough for us since it is our first major contract with a drilling company,” said Peter Beales, Business Development Manager for AGSL. “It demonstrates that our services have wide applicability across the oil and gas sector.”

Our contacts at Stena Drilling confessed that it was refreshing to encounter people who are not only knowledgeable and well-informed about industry regulatory requirements, but are passionate about their product,” said Beales. “We take great pride in compliments like this because it is precisely how we would like AGSL to be perceived: informed and passionate.”

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DNV Software Providing One Single Data Model for Offshore Design

Design and analysis of offshore and maritime structures has previously involved the use of several different models where data from one model must be manually transferred to others – a costly and time-consuming process. DNV Software is now releasing Sesam GeniE 6.4, where design engineers can use one single model for design, modification and life extension. This new version increases significantly both efficiency and the quality of the design results, says Ole Jan Nekstad, DNV Software Product Director for Sesam.

One of the key features of the new Sesam GeniE release is the ability to work inside a consistent user interface. A typical example of such is connections between pile and leg as well as the disconnection of beams and plates. The data model may be made by Sesam GeniE only or imported from several systems. This is a major timesaver in for example life extension analysis for customers who use supporting programs.

“This release will enable users to do more, as well as to do it more easily,” says Nekstad.  “In addition, they will have better control with higher quality of calculations.”

“Sesam GeniE has seen an exceptional growth in sales across the globe,” says DNV Software Managing Director Are Føllesdal Tjønn. “This enables us to invest even more in development, and we see the results now. Our offshore engineering solution has unique capabilities in an integrated environment for structural modelling, environmental load calculations, structural response analysis and engineering evaluation and redesign,” he says.

Part of the integrated one-model solution allows tension and compression analysis inside Sesam GeniE. This has been requested by customers in order to reduce superfluous investments in separate systems, thereby cutting cost on unnecessary licences and on training.

For customers needing to migrate model data from other systems, the new release features expanded import capabilities where less manual work is needed, another way to cut cost.

Details about Sesam GeniE: www.dnvsoftware.com/sesamgenie

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Petrobras Signs Contracts for 23 new Support Vessels


petrobras-logoUnits will be built in Brazil, with 60% local content

On 04/18 Petrobras signed contracts for 23 support vessels, as part of the 3rd Fleet Renewal Plan for Offshore Support Vessels.

The units, type PSV 4500 and OSRV 750, fulfill 60% local content requirements and will be built in Brazil. Prices presented were competitive, given expected metrics and budgets.

This was the 4th Round of the Fleet Renewal Plan. In July this year, Petrobras will go to the market for another 24 offshore support vessels (5th Round), thus fulfilling the 2014 contracting target of 146 vessels to be built in Brazil, as planned in the 3rd Renewal Plan Fleet for Offshore Support Vessels.

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Tritech Brings FPSO Monitoring System to Brazil

Interest in Tritech’s industry-standard products has grown over recent years, prompting the company to hold live in-country product demonstrations.

TritechRAMsTritech is to showcase its anchor chain and riser monitoring system RAMS™ on Wednesday 8 May at LabOceano, COPPE, Rio de Janeiro. Subsea engineers, naval architects and subsea maintenance and inspection personnel as well as publishers and editors are encouraged to attend in order to gain first-hand experience of the real-time monitoring capabilities RAMS™ offers Floating Production, Storage and Offloading Unit (FPSO) assets. 

The company is also pleased to announce its partnership with MACSea Ltda, who will provide support for future in-country deployments of Tritech’s RAMS™ systems. 

Angus Lugsdin RAMS™ Business Development Manager, comments:

“This is a significant demonstration of Tritech’s FPSO monitoring system and comes at a time where there is notable shift change in industry requirements to have asset monitoring in place. Tritech is also committed to delivering localised support to our South American customers and our partnership with MACSea provides Tritech with a local presence in Macaé, to ensure our Brazilian customers receive the high levels of professional customer after sales support Tritech is renowned for.”

Antonio Silva, the Commercial Manager for MACSea Ltda, comments:

“We look forward to assisting Tritech with the demonstration of their proven RAMS™ technology and to supporting Brazilian customers with the deployment of this unique technology.”

Participants are invited to a presentation on the RAMS™ technology from 1130 to 1300 where a complimentary buffet lunch will be provided; the presentation will be followed by a live demonstration in the LabOceano test tank.

 Places are strictly limited, to register to attend Tritech’s RAMS™ demo, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 1 May.

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RPS Group Acquires Knowledge Reservoir

KnowledgeReservKnowledge Reservoir, a leading global energy consulting company, announces its acquisition by RPS Group plc (RPS).

 

RPS is a global, multi-disciplinary consultancy providing advice upon the exploration and production of oil and gas and other natural resources; and the development and management of the built and natural environment.  Listed on the London Stock Exchange, RPS employs more than 5,000 people in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Africa, the Middle East Australia and Asia.  

 

The acquisition of Knowledge Reservoir by RPS creates a substantially enlarged geoscience and engineering consulting group with global reach and one that is better equipped to meet the challenges posed by complex, multi-disciplinary projects.  The new organization will be known as RPS Knowledge Reservoir.

Dr. Ivor Ellul and the Knowledge Reservoir management team, along with all current staff, will remain with the business which will continue to operate from its existing office locations.

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Bowhead Transport Company and Crowley Marine Services Announce Joint Venture


Bowhead_Transport.RGB.LCrowleyBowhead Transport Company, LLC, and Crowley Marine Services, Inc., have announced the formation of a joint venture to provide marine services in Alaska’s Arctic. The new Alaska-based joint venture will operate under the name UIC Bowhead-Crowley, LLC. Bowhead Transport is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ukpeaġvik Iñupiat Corporation (UIC), the Alaska Native Village Corporation of Barrow, Alaska.

Both companies have longstanding histories of providing services in the Arctic with Bowhead Transport Company providing common carriage service for 30 years to the coastal communities of Alaska and Crowley providing marine transportation, energy support and petroleum distribution services for over 60 years throughout the state.

The companies’ complementary business models offer clients a comprehensive package for their marine, logistics and transportation needs. The UIC Bowhead-Crowley joint venture will be mainly focused on the oil and gas industries and supporting their growing needs in the Arctic. Because of the companies’ strong ties to the communities in which they work, they are able to facilitate local hire and provide local expertise.

"This new partnership is really tailored to meet the needs of customers in the oil and gas; mining and minerals; and engineering, procurement and construction management industries,” said Crowley’s Bruce Harland, vice president in Anchorage. “Crowley has provided turnkey marine solutions in the Arctic for many years utilizing the company's diverse capabilities, assets and world-class project management skills. Our solutions team is very much looking forward to working with Bowhead to provide greater value to customers with multifaceted marine and offshore construction-related projects.”

“We look to provide greater efficiency, lower costs, expanded capabilities and higher value to our customers through the joint venture. Both of our companies have a strong commitment to the safety of our employees and those we work with and strive to be good citizens in every community in which we operate,” said Jim Dwight, general manager of Bowhead Transport Company.

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Fugro GeoServices Announces New Leadership

fugroFugro GeoServices is pleased to announce several recent promotions within the company, including two key management appointments: Mr. Ted Hampton, president, and Mr. Adam Jackson, senior vice president.

Mr. Hampton is a licensed geologist and former vice president of the company. He replaces longtime leader Mr. Tom Hamilton, who will retire this spring after nearly 30 years of service with Fugro. Together, Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Hampton led the formation of Fugro GeoServices in 1999 to provide oil and gas clients in the Gulf of Mexico with high quality marine geophysical surveys. Under their leadership, the company has developed from a conventional survey company for the Gulf of Mexico to a high-tech survey organization with expanded reach into South America and Alaska markets.

Mr. Jackson also enjoys a long tenure with Fugro, having worked in field and management positions in the United States and abroad. For the past decade, he has served as business development manager for Fugro GeoServices, helping to win new projects and manage their successful completion. As senior vice president, Mr. Jackson will work closely with Mr. Hampton to support the company’s goals while having direct oversight of marketing and project management functions. Mr. Jackson works from the company’s Houston, Texas, office, which allows close contact with the company’s oil and gas clients.

In addition to the senior management appointments, the Lafayette office announces the following promotions:

  • Lon Guillory, controller
  • Bill Bridges, operations manager
  • Kerry Behrens, senior consultant
  • Melissa Jeansonne and Jack King, commercial managers
  • Jim Grady, assets manager
  • André Prejean, conventional survey manager
  • Marc Harris, AUV supervisor
  • John Boudreaux, party manager
  • Chad Pastor, technology manager

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Offshore Installation Services (OIS), Appoints Mike Earlam as President

Offshore Installation Services (OIS), an Acteon company, has named Mike Earlam as president.Mike-Earlam Based in the company’s Aberdeen office, Mike will be responsible for driving the development and growth of OIS and will play a key role in exploiting opportunities to work together with other Acteon companies.

Earlam has wide experience of the subsea market and joins OIS from his position as managing director with Fugro Salt Subsea. In that role, he was responsible for establishing and building the company’s subsea construction and trenching business in the North Sea and Europe. Previously, he was the global chartering manager for Subsea 7 and played a key role in developing the company’s fleet. His other career experience includes 10 years with ASCO running marine operations and logistics and managing a subsea construction contractor in Australia and the Far East.

“OIS has a very encouraging start to 2013 and is well-positioned to take advantage of the growing markets in the North Sea and further afield,” said Acteon Group vice president Neill Kelly. “The company is heading for a period where we anticipate significant opportunity and growth in the areas of offshore installation, inspection, repair and maintenance and suspended well abandonment. I am confident that Mike’s experience will be of great benefit to OIS.”

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Clariant Oil Services to Acquire Champion Technologies’ Deep Water Gulf of Mexico Assets

clariantlogoClariant, a world leader in Specialty Chemicals, has announced that it signed an agreement with Ecolab Inc. to acquire certain of its deep water Gulf of Mexico assets. The divestment of the assets by Ecolab was a prerequisite by the U.S. Department of Justice for the approval of the acquisition of Champion Technologies. Financial details of the acquisition are not being disclosed.

Clariant is entering into a series of agreements with Champion related to its deep water Gulf of Mexico business. The acquired assets include Champion Technologies’ oil and gas production chemicals services in the deep water Gulf of Mexico. The transaction is complementary to the company’s strategy to further expand its deep water operations in the region and globally.

“This acquisition is synergistic with our decision to expand Clariant’s deep water business and grow our Oil Services operations in North America, building upon our investment strategy in the U.S.” said John Dunne, Senior Vice President, Clariant Oil & Mining Services.

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Aker Solutions Wins Umbilical Contract in West Africa


logoAker Solutions has been awarded a contract from Technip to deliver umbilicals for the Girassol Resources Initiative (GirRI) phase 2 development off the coast of Angola. Contract value is undisclosed.

Aker Solutions will deliver two dynamic power and control steel tube umbilicals, one dynamic power cable and ancillary equipment.
 
GirRI is located in Angola's Block 17, 210 kilometres west of Luanda. The development is 1,300 metres under sea level.

"Our advanced umbilical design provides both reliability and durability and we look forward to executing this project in close collaboration with Technip," says Tom Munkejord, head of Aker Solutions' umbilical business area.

The umbilicals will be manufactured at Aker Solutions' facility in Moss, Norway, with project management, design and engineering support from the company's office at Fornebu, Norway.

Subsea umbilicals are deployed on the seabed to supply necessary controls and chemicals to subsea oil and gas wells, subsea manifolds and any subsea systems requiring remote control.

The contract has been booked as order intake in the first quarter of 2013.

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BOEM Completes Final Supplemental Review for Two Proposed Oil and Gas Lease Sales in the Gulf of Mexico

BOEMlogoThe Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has released a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for proposed oil and gas Lease Sales 233 and 231, the third and fourth sales scheduled in the current 2012-2017 Five Year Program.

As part of the Obama Administration's all-of-the-above energy strategy, domestic oil and gas production has grown each year the President has been in office, with domestic oil production currently higher than any time in two decades and natural gas production at its highest level ever. Renewable electricity generation from wind, solar, and geothermal sources has doubled and foreign oil imports now account for less than 40 percent of the oil consumed in America - the lowest level since 1988.

Western Planning Area Lease Sale 233 is tentatively scheduled to be held in 2013, and Central Planning Area Lease Sale 231 is tentatively scheduled to be held in 2014. A Federal Register notice announcing the availability of the Final SEIS will be published on April 12, 2013.

The SEIS updates several previously published environmental reviews covering the Gulf of Mexico and incorporates the latest available information following the Deepwater Horizon explosion, oil spill, and cleanup. The bureau will continue to conduct and assess additional scientific research and studies, and use this information to inform future offshore leasing and energy development decisions.

The Final SEIS Gulf of Mexico OCS Oil and Gas Lease Sales: 2013-2014 (OCS EIS/EA BOEM 2013-0118) is available to view online: http://boem.gov/Environmental-Stewardship/Environmental-Assessment/NEPA/nepaprocess.aspx. It is also available through the BOEM Gulf of Mexico Region's Public Information Office, and can be requested at 800-200-GULF (4853).

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) promotes energy independence, environmental protection and economic development through responsible, science-based management of offshore conventional and renewable energy.

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Noble Corporation Awarded Contracts for Two Ultra-Deepwater Drillships; Adds in Excess of $1.3 Billion in Potential Revenue Backlog

noblecorplogoNoble Corporation (NYSE: NE) has announced that the Company has entered into two (2) three-year term drilling contracts with Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE: PXP) for the  Noble Sam Croft and the Noble Tom Madden, two of Noble's new ultra-deepwater drillships currently under construction at the Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. Ltd. (HHI) shipyard in Ulsan, South Korea. The drillships, which are being constructed on a fixed price basis, are expected to be utilized for operations primarily in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico under these contracts.

NobleSamCroftThe  Noble Sam Croft (Image) is expected to be delivered in the second quarter of 2014, followed closely bythe Noble Tom Madden, which is expected to be delivered in second half of 2014. The contracts are expected to commence following mobilization to the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and customer acceptance. Revenues to be generated over the three-year terms are expected to total approximately $693 million per rig, including mobilization fees, representing in excess of $1.3 billion in total potential backlog. With the award of contracts for these two units, all four ultra-deepwater drillships under construction for Noble at HHI are now under contract.

"With the addition of these units to our U.S. Gulf of Mexico fleet, Noble will have one of the most modern and capable fleets in the  region, a fact that demonstrates the fundamental change going on across the Company," noted David W. Williams , Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. "At the same time, these contracts provide us with significant additional backlog, while expanding and diversifying our customer base as we grow our relationship with an important new customer."

The  Noble Sam Croft and the Noble Tom Madden are two of the four ultra-deepwater drillships being constructed for Noble by HHI. All four drillships are based on a Hyundai Gusto P10000 hull design, capable of operations in water depths of up to 12,000 feet and offering a variable deck load of 20,000 metric tons. The  Noble Sam Croft and Noble Tom Madden will be fully equipped to operate in up to 10,000 feet of water while offering DP-3 station keeping, two complete six-ram BOP systems, multiple parallel activity features that improve overall well construction efficiencies and accommodations for up to 210 personnel. Both rigs also will also be equipped with a 165-ton heave compensated construction cranes to facilitate deployment of subsea production equipment, providing another level of efficiency during field development programs.

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Anadarko East Africa Update: Discovers New Natural Gas Field Offshore Mozambique; Encounters Oil Shows Offshore Kenya

APC-Orca-Discovery-4-18-13Anadarko Petroleum Corporation (NYSE: APC) announces the discovery of a new natural gas accumulation fully contained within the Offshore Area 1 of the Rovuma Basin of Mozambique. The Orca-1 discovery well encountered approximately 190 net feet (58 meters) of natural gas pay in a Paleocene fan system.

"Discovering another large, distinct and separate natural gas accumulation in the Offshore Area 1 continues our outstanding exploration success offshore Mozambique," said Sr. Vice President, Worldwide Exploration Bob Daniels. "We are designing an initial two-well appraisal program to define the areal extent of the Orca field, which will commence immediately after drilling our Linguado and Espadarte exploration wells. Orca is a single large Paleocene column, and its proximity to shore provides additional options and flexibility for potential future development."

The Orca-1 exploration well was drilled to a total depth of approximately 16,391 feet (4,996 meters), in water depths of approximately 3,481 feet (1,061 meters).

Anadarko is the operator in the Offshore Area 1 with a 36.5-percent working interest. Co-owners include Mitsui E&P Mozambique Area 1, Limited (20 percent), BPRL Ventures Mozambique B.V. (10 percent), Videocon Mozambique Rovuma 1 Limited (10 percent) and PTT Exploration & Production Plc (8.5 percent). Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos, ep's 15-percent interest is carried through the exploration phase.

Anadarko also completed drilling its Kubwa well in the L-07 Block offshore Kenya, which encountered non-commercial oil shows in reservoir-quality sands.

"We are very encouraged with our first test of Kenya's previously unexplored deepwater basin, in which mudlog and well-site evaluation of core data indicates the presence of a working petroleum system with reservoir-quality sands," Daniels said. "The Kubwa well tested multiple play concepts and provided useful data regarding the prospectivity of our six-million-acre position offshore Kenya. The rig will now mobilize south to drill the Kiboko well."

Anadarko operates the L-07 Block with a 50-percent working interest. Co-venturers in the L-07 Block include Total E&P Kenya B.V. (40 percent) and PTT Exploration & Production Plc (10 percent).

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SeaRobotics Delivers 5.7-m USV to NATO


SeaRobotics_LogoSeaRobotics Corporation
has delivered an Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) in their 5.7-m hull series to the NATO's Center for Marine Research and Experimentation (CMRE).  This general purpose USV will be utilized to improve payload capacity and efficiency of the impressive, fully autonomous mine neutralization system developed at CMRE.  

SeaRobotics-Delivers-5-7-m-USV 

Workhorse USV ships in 20-ft container

With over 350 kg of payload, the ability to be configured as an all-electric or as a diesel-electric hybrid system, and the ability to reach speeds in excess of 5 m/sec, the 5.7-m system will excel in numerous applications.  Enhancing its role in mine neutralization operations or many other tasks, the system can ship worldwide in a standard 20-ft container.  The engineered boat trailer doubles as a shipping cart and allows transport of the exceptionally stable USV at a reduced beam on the road or in a container.

“We are pleased to support NATO's mine countermeasures project at CMRE.  This complex, fully autonomous system integrating a USV, AUV, and acoustic imaging with advanced autonomous behaviors is truly extending the state of the art and we are happy to be involved,” stated Don Darling, President of SeaRobotics.

The Searobotics product line of USVs includes both 5.7-m and 11-m vessels, both of which can be used in arctic operations.

SeaRobotics specializes in smart vessels that are remotely or autonomously operated as well as autonomous ship hull grooming systems.  Its clients include major military and commercial organizations, both U.S. and foreign.  SeaRobotics' marine survey software interfaces with most data acquisition hardware, software, and sensing systems to produce multi-spectral, DGPS-stamped data for survey, research, or surveillance efforts.  Applications for SeaRobotics vessels range from bathymetric and hydrographic surveys to coastal, harbor, and riverine surveillance.  SeaRobotics surface vehicles range from small, modular, man-portable systems to large, long-endurance workhorse vehicles survey and surveillance systems.

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BMT ARGOSS Wins Caspian Sea Forecasting Contract

BMT ARGOSS (BMT), a subsidiary of BMT Group Ltd, has secured a long-term contract to provide an oil major with weather forecasting services for all its North Caspian Sea operations, both offshore and onshore. The scope of BMT’s work includes provision of all forecasting services including Metocean and aviation as well as all operational support, including maintenance of meteorological equipment on all of the installations.

BMT-ARGOSS---Caspian-Sea

BMT’s working relationship with this oil major extends back to 2009, providing elements of the forecasting services package. However the new contract sees BMT as the sole provider of weather forecasting services.

BMT’s 13 strong team will provide a 24/7 service in extremely harsh weather conditions with temperatures as low as -30oc. Where necessary, BMT’s forecasters and Metocean service specialists will travel to offshore installations to provide bespoke ice and aviation forecasts to support operational requirements.

Jean-Paul Lindeboom, BMT ARGOSS Forecast Manager, comments: “BMT’s local forecasting team based in Atyrau, Kazakhstan has already demonstrated the quality of its work against a third party benchmark. We’re delighted that our client has recognised this in awarding BMT all its North Caspian Sea forecasting work against some stiff competition.”

He continues: “Because the continental climate prevalent in the North Caspian Sea causes extremes of temperature in both summer and winter, accurate, real-time forecasting is a prerequisite to planning and carrying out day to day operations. BMT helps utilise the full potential of available weather windows, allowing the client to reduce operational risk and save time.”

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Honeywell’s UOP Technology Selected to Treat Liquefied Natural Gas on World’s First Floating Facility

PETRONAS will use Honeywell’s UOP Amine Guard™ FS process to remove contaminants on its Floating Liquefied Natural Gas facility in Malaysia

Honeywell

UOP LLC, a Honeywell (NYSE: HON) company, announces that it has been selected by Malaysia’s Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS) to provide technology for acid gas removal on the world’s first Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) project known as PETRONAS Floating LNG 1or PFLNG 1.

The PFLNG 1 facility, which is designed to extract natural gas from offshore wells and liquefy and store it for later transport, will use Honeywell’s UOP Amine Guard FS process to remove carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide from the liquefied natural gas (LNG) feed streams.

“We are pleased to continue to grow UOP's long-standing relationship with PETRONAS and for the opportunity to work with the company on its historic first floating LNG project,” said Rebecca Liebert, vice president and general manager for Honeywell’s UOP Gas Processing and Hydrogen business unit. “UOP offers a full suite of leading-edge, agile gas processing technologies, enabling us to design solutions for customers monetizing their gas resources. Together with PETRONAS, we are excited to bring continued improvements to meet the world’s growing demand for cleaner-burning and versatile natural gas energy in this new frontier of gas conditioning and treating.”

Scheduled for start-up by the end of 2015, the FLNG unit will be moored approximately 112 miles off the coast of Sarawak, Malaysia, and is designed to produce 1.2 million tons per year of LNG.

FLNG facilities such as PFLNG1 represent a step change in LNG production. Historically, the treatment of natural gas, liquefaction for transport by sea, and loading and offloading have only been possible at onshore plants. FLNG facilities allow these operations to be carried out far from land and closer to offshore gas sources. They will play a significant role in efforts to unlock gas reserves, particularly in remote and stranded fields previously deemed uneconomical to develop.

Honeywell’s UOP Amine Guard FS process was developed to reduce acid gas contaminants to very low levels prior to liquefaction. The technology is used to precondition the gas that results in 40 percent of the world’s LNG production from onshore base-load LNG plants.

UOP’s technology has been modified for use in a floating service environment to minimize plot size, weight and cost, while improving reliability, resistance to rocking motion and expanding the operating envelope. The acid gas removal system was designed in cooperation between PETRONAS and Honeywell’s UOP to obtain an optimized process capable of expansion and handling various feed stream contaminant concentrations.

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Petroleum Safety Authority Investigation: Important Information On Mobile Facilities

PetroleumSafteyAuthorityThe investigation conducted by the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) into the Floatel Superior stability incident on 7 November 2012 has yielded new knowledge about securing anchors and transport at transit draft. It has also exposed challenges related to regulations, classification and design assumptions.

An unsecured anchor caused the hull of the Floatel Superior accommodation rig to be punctured in eight places on the night of 6-7 November 2012, leading to water intrusion in two tanks and a list of about 5.8 degrees.

The PSA has investigated this incident. See notification of orders after investigation of stability incident on Floatel Superior, 7 November 2012

Information has emerged in connection with the investigation which could be important for other players on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS).

Securing anchors

One of the anchor bolsters on Floatel Superior lost three braces on the incident night as a result of damage which had arisen and developed over time.

Following these fractures, the remaining parts of the bolster were unable to prevent the anchor hitting the hull directly. The anchor hung free, and wave action caused to strike the hull repeatedly and cause seven holes.

A number of incidents have been reported which relate to anchors stowed in bolsters, both while the facility was in transit and during long-term stowage because of dynamic positioning (DP) operations and the like.

Keeping anchors in the bolsters over a long period, at or near the waterline, increases the risk of damage.

It is difficult to achieve a sufficiently stiff system for securing the anchors, particularly when using wire rope rather than chain. Wire rope is not an optimum choice for holding an anchor in place.

If anchors are to be stowed in bolsters during a storm, the investigation shows that careful calculations must be made of the loads which anchors and bolsters could experience during transport or operation.

Robustness

If the hull is to withstand direct blows from anchors, its dimensions might need to be considerable. Simply using a more robust bolster structure is not enough, but could be a way of protecting against anchor damage.

A number of bolsters on other facilities have an extra horizontal brace between the wear surface and the hull. This could delay the anchor striking the hull, but an unsecured anchor might also “sail” over it. The effect of the additional brace is then lost.

Another key element is the tension to be used in keeping the anchors in place. Industry practice has been to use 40-50 tonnes of winch tension on the anchor stowed in the bolsters. Even then, movement with consequent damage has been reported.

Additional measures are accordingly necessary. It has not been normal practice to secure or lash anchors on semi-submersibles, since the area between fairlead, anchor and bolster is hard to access.

To prevent similar incidents when the decision has been taken to stow anchors in the bolsters during transport and operation, great attention must be paid to winch tension.

This must be viewed in conjunction with the position of the anchor in relation to:

  • relevant drafts of the facility
  • the attachment of the anchor to the bolster
  • relevant sea states
  • design of the bolster

It is important that owners ensure that their facilities do not suffer damage if anchors have been stowed in the bolsters over a long period. Ensuring that new damage does not occur is also important.

Transport at transit draft

The PSA takes the view that Floatel Superior had suffered damage before it was taken into use on the NCS because it had been transported in higher waves than permitted by its operations manual and analyses. This damage had probably worsened in bad weather up to the incident night.

Semi-submersibles are normally transported at transit draft because they then experience minimum resistance and can be moved swiftly.

The hull designer applies assumptions concerning the weather and specifies limits for the conditions in which the facility can operate.

It is important that owners ensure that their facilities are and have been used in accordance with the weather assumptions at transit draft.

Should there be nonconformities, furthermore, possible effects on the hull of operating beyond the design assumptions should be analysed or inspected in order to establish the consequences of such operation for continued use of the facility.

Regulations, classification and design assumptions

The PSA’s investigation has shown that the combination of DP and classic mooring calls for adjustments to standards and classification rules to take account of a number of systems in a coherent manner. The PSA will follow this up with the classification societies.

Damage development on Floatel Superior can be traced throughout its operational history. The design and operating assumptions have been inadequately communicated and documented to take account of the reciprocal effects.

The investigation has demonstrated that earlier and more detailed follow-up of questions and observations from people involved could have halted or reduced development of the damage.

It is a general observation that clearer communication and better mutual understanding between those involved are important for reducing risk in complex systems.

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