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Royal Dutch Shell Plc .com: Gas ‘super-platform’ installed off Sakhalin

From Upstreamonline
By Upstream staff

Supermajor Shell’s Sakhalin II operating company, Sakhalin Energy, has installed Russia’s first offshore gas platform on the Lunskoye field in the Sea of Okhotsk, north-east of Russia’s Sakhalin Island.

The successful mating of the Lunskoye-A’s 21,800-tonne topsides with the four legs of the concrete gravity-base structure (CGBS) placed on the seabed last season broke the world record for a “floatover” operation, Shell said.

The procedure involved floating the purpose-built barge carrying the facility between the CGBS legs, then ballasting it down to lower the topsides onto the legs. Leg mating units, each weighing 130 tonnes, were pre-installed in each leg to centre the topsides and help absorb shock.

The nine-hour operation was completed on Friday after several days’ planning. It involved the barge, the Saipem Castoro-8 installation support vessel and a fleet of five tugs and anchor-handling vessels.

The platform will be the main source of gas for the Sakhalin II liquified natural gas plant at Prigorodnoye, Russia’s first. It is designed to supply 50 million cubic feet of gas and 50,000 barrels of condensate per day.The topsides include 27 slots for directional drilling, hydrocarrbon seperation facilities and crew accommodations.

The leg-mating units include special technology permitting the platform to move independently of its base, improving its ability to withstand earthquakes – a first for the oil and gas industry, the Anglo Dutch company said.Production is expected to start in 2008.

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