Flexing our muscles in heavy lift and transport operations

“It’s been an incredible summer. I don’t think we have ever carried out so many heavy lifts and installations in such a short time before,” says Margareth Øvrum, VP for Technology, Projects and Drilling in Statoil. And it’s not over yet: a busy summer will be followed by a busy autumn.

Øvrum is pleased that all the lifting and transport operations this summer have been carried out successfully.

“I am truly impressed by the professionalism demonstrated by everyone involved, and very pleased that safety has been taken care of from A to Z,” she says. And it’s not over yet: a busy project summer will be followed by a busy project autumn.

“It will be essential to maintain our HSE focus to ensure top quality deliveries until we reach the finishing line,” says Øvrum.

It’s been an incredible summer. I don’t think we have ever carried out so many heavy lifts and installations in such a short time before

Margareth Øvrum, vice president for TPD

FROM SOUTH KOREA WITH LOVE

On 30 June, the Gina Krog platform in the North Sea commenced production, our first new platform in operation here since Valemon came on stream in January 2015. Constructed in South Korea, the Gina Krog topside is one of several deliveries from South Korea to meet this summer’s milestones.

Constructed in the Hyundai yard in Ulsan, the Aasta Hansteen hull arrived at Høylandsbygd early on 18 June. Ten days later it was floated off the transport vessel, before being towed to Klosterfjorden where the hull was raised into an upright position by filling 50 million litres of water into its ballast tanks.

At the end of June, the first of our new jack-up rigs, Cat J Askeladden, was completed at the Samsung yard in South Korea. Both this rig and its sister rig, Cat J Askepott, are currently en route to Norway. Owned by the Gullfaks and Oseberg licences respectively, they are scheduled to start production later this year.

The installation of the huge topside for the Mariner A platform commenced in July. It took five vessels to transport the modules from DSME in South Korea to the field. Saipem 7000 carried out the lifting operations and on 2 August, the last module was in place. The huge assembly and completion job is currently being carried out.

“It has been a very busy, but good summer, having met such vital milestones as this, and with good HSE results,” says Morten Ruth, head of the Mariner, Aasta Hansteen and Gina Krog projects.

“Gina Krog has commenced production, the other two projects have passed key milestones, but we still have major tasks ahead of us. Both Aasta Hansteen and Mariner are on track for start-up next year,” he says.

Hywind turbines in place at Buchnan Deep off Scotland

Statoil’s wind business

Hywind Scotland is another project with considerable activity.  On the evening of 18 June, the first turbine was lifted at Stord, and a few hours later it was transferred to the floating substructure, a lifting operation without precedence. After a successful week of operations, all five turbines had been floated, and by the middle of August they had all reached Buchnan Deep off Scotland.

Meanwhile, the Dudgeon field in England has seen the arrival of new turbines regularly throughout the summer, and soon installation of all 67 will have been completed.

Johan Sverdrup becoming visible

At the end of July, the largest jacket on the Norwegian continental shelf, weighing a good 26,000 tonnes, sailed from Kværner Verdal to the Johan Sverdrup field where it was installed by the Thialf crane vessel. The jacket is now the first visible installation on the field, and come the autumn, the project will become even more visible.

Then, three large modules for the drilling platform are to be assembled in Klosterfjorden, the same location as the Hywind turbines were assembled and the Aasta Hansteen hull was erected. The large main frame left Aibel’s yard in Thailand at the beginning of August.

Lean: small and fast

Oseberg 2 left the Zwijndrecht yard in the Netherlands only 16 months after contract signing. Weighing a total of 5000 tonnes, the unmanned wellhead platform lives up to the project’s motto: Think big, build small. It was installed at the field in July and the hook-up work is well underway.

Oseberg Vestflanken 2 jacket installation
Oseberg Vestflanken 2 jacket topside

And there are even more project milestones on the list: the Trestakk project saw the first steel-cut for the base frame at Aibel’s yard in Haugesund this summer. This yard also made the first steel cut for modules to be delivered to the third-party project Dvalin, while the Utgard base frame is under construction by Radøygruppen. The Utgard balcony is already installed at Sleipner, and both the Snefrid Nord and Visund Nord IOR developments have been given the green light by the licences—while Byrding has started production.


Oseberg H jacket topside underway Photo: Jan Arne Wold

Mating the two halves of the first Hywind Scotland turbine Photo: Jan Arne Wold

The Aasta Hansteen substructure prior to upending Photo: Espen Rønnevik

The Gina Krog field came on stream Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland

Oseberg H jacket topside underway Photo: Jan Arne Wold

Mating the two halves of the first Hywind Scotland turbine Photo: Jan Arne Wold

The Aasta Hansteen substructure prior to upending Photo: Espen Rønnevik

The Gina Krog field came on stream Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland

Still busy

And there is more to come: the Aasta Hansteen topside is being prepared for sailaway from South Korea in September. Late this autumn it will meet up with the hull at Stord, one of many events in this area this autumn:  the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform will be assembled in Klosterfjorden, Njord A will leave the Kværner Stord dock to make room for the Johan Sverdrup accommodation platform, and StordBase, where the Hywind Scotland turbines were assembled, is currently being filled with pipes for Johan Sverdrup.

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