VESSELS, RIGS, & SURFACE SYSTEMS Jessica Tippee • Houston
Prelude sets sail for Australia
Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG)
facility departed the Samsung Heavy Industries shipyard in Geoje,
South Korea, at the end of June. The facility, constructed by the
Technip Samsung Consortium, is being towed about 5,800 km ( 3,600
mi) to the Prelude gas field in the Browse basin, 475 km (295 mi)
offshore Broome, Western Australia. On arrival, 16 pre-positioned
mooring chains will be lifted from the seabed and secured to the
vessel’s 93-m (305-ft) high turret. Once secure, the hook-up and
commissioning phase of the project will begin, which is expected to
take nine- 12 months.
The Prelude is 488-m ( 1,600-ft) long and 74-m (243-ft) wide. It is
being towed by three tugs, each more than 75 m (246 ft) long. A
fourth tug acts as an escort.
The FLNG facility is operated by Shell in joint venture with INPEX
( 17.5%), KOGAS (10%), and OPIC (5%).
Keppel updates conversion projects
Keppel Offshore & Marine’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Keppel
Shipyard Ltd. is preparing to deliver the world’s first converted
floating liquefaction vessel (FLNGV) to owner Golar LNG Ltd. The
vessel, which measures 294 m (965 ft) LOA and 62. 6 m (205 ft) in
breadth, was named Hilli Episeyo at a recent ceremony in Singapore.
It will soon sail to Cameroon to operate offshore Kribi for Perenco
and Société Nationale des Hydrocarbures, and will be the first FLNG
project in Africa.
Converted from a 1975-built Moss LNG carrier, the Hilli Episeyo
has a storage capacity of 125,000 cu m ( 4. 41 MMcf). Sponsons measuring 206.3-m (676.8-ft) long x 10.5-m ( 34.4-ft) wide were fitted on
both sides of the hull to house the topsides equipment comprising
pre-treatment systems, four PRICO single mixed refrigerant liquefac-
tion trains, boil-off gas compression, and offloading equipment. The
vessel has a liquefaction capacity of about 2. 4 MM metric tons/yr
( 2. 64 MM tons/yr).
Oscar Spieler, CEO of Golar LNG, said: “Hilli Episeyo represents a
game changer in the LNG industry with its fasttrack, low cost project
In addition, Keppel Shipyard recently won three contracts for the
conversion, repair, and modification of offshore vessels.
Dixstone Holdings commissioned the shipyard to convert the M/T
Tempera into an FPSO for deployment on Perenco’s Yombe field off-
shore Republic of Congo. It will replace the FPSO Conkouati which
operated at the field for more than 25 years and was also converted
by Keppel Shipyard in 1991. The scope for the replacement vessel
includes installation of topsides process skids and a new accommoda-
tion module, amongst others. Work will start soon, with the vessel
due to be delivered in 3Q 2018.
For MTC Engineering, the shipyard will perform repair work for
the life extension and conversion of an oil tanker into the FPSO MTC
Ledang, which will be deployed on the Ophir field offshore Peninsular
Malaysia. Here the work includes fabrication of a flare tower and
foundation; lifting and integration of the crude stabilization unit; and
other refurbishment tasks. The completed FPSO is expected to leave
the yard later in the current quarter.
Finally, Royal Boskalis Westminster has commissioned the shipyard to convert a semisubmersible heavy-lift vessel, Finesse, into a
crane vessel, equipped with a 3,000-metric ton ( 3,307-ton) crane, DP- 2
dynamic positioning, and accommodation for up to 150 people. The
vessel, already berthed at Keppel Shipyard, will also be capable of
transporting and installing offshore wind turbine foundations upon
its completion in 3Q.
Shell acquires Stones FPSO for $1 billion
Shell Offshore Inc. affiliate Shell E and P Offshore Services B.V.
has exercised its right under the charter agreement to purchase the
FPSO Turritella from SBM Offshore. The vessel is contracted for the
deepwater Stones field development in the Gulf of Mexico, which began
production last year. Shell and SBM will work over the next several
months to achieve a safe, smooth transition of the vessel operations.
The company selling the asset is a joint venture owned by SBM
Offshore with 55% interest, Mitsubishi Corp. with 30% interest, and
Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha with 15% interest. The transaction
comprises a total cash consideration of c. $1 billion. It is expected to
close in early 2018.
The net divestment proceeds, after taking into account the unwinding of the JV ownership and partner commitments, will primarily be
used for project finance redemption and as such will decrease SBM
Offshore’s proportional net debt position.
The purchase allows a Shell affiliate to assume operatorship of the
Stones development in its entirety, creating additional efficiencies
through integration of subsea to surface operations.
The Stones development is located in 2,896 m ( 9,500 ft) of water
about 320 km (200 mi) offshore Louisiana in the Walker Ridge area.
According to Shell, Stones is the world’s deepest offshore oil and
gas project and is expected to deliver about 50,000 boe/d by the end
of this year. •
The FPSO Turritella has a production capacity of about 60,000 b/d
of oil and 15 MMcf/d of natural gas.
(Courtesy SBM Offshore)
Construction of the
Prelude FLNG vessel
began in October 2012.