The main Gullfaks field lies in block 34/10 in the northern part of the Norwegian North Sea. It has been developed with three large concrete production platforms.
The Gullfaks A platform began production on 22 December 1986, with Gullfaks B following on 29 February 1988 and the C platform on 4 November 1989.
Produced oil is loaded directly into shuttle tankers on the field, while associated gas is piped to the Kårstø gas treatment plant north of Stavanger and then on to continental Europe.
The A platform is also used for storing and exporting stabilised crude from the Vigdis and Visund fields.
Oil and gas from Gullfaks B is transferred to the A and C platforms for processing, storage and export.
Since June 1994, Gullfaks C has received and processed oil from the Tordis field.
The field set a production record of 605,965 barrels for a single day on 7 October 1994.
Three satellite fields – Gullfaks South, Rimfaks, Skinfaks and Gullveig – have been developed with subsea wells remotely controlled from the Gullfaks A and C platforms.
The recovery factor on Gullfaks is 59 per cent, but the goal is to increase into 62 per cent.
Measures to improve recovery include horizontal and extended-reach wells, new completion and sand control technology, and water alternating gas (WAG) injection.
Block 34/10 was awarded in 1978 to three Norwegian companies:
- Statoil (operator)
- Norsk Hydro
- the former Saga Petroleum
This was the first time a purely domestic consortium had been awarded an offshore licence.
Interest in this acreage was very high, and it had been nicknamed the Golden Block before being awarded.