Aker BP Brings Viper, Kobra Online

Accomplishing the task on time and within budget, Aker BP has started production from the Viper-Kobra development in the Alvheim area offshore Norway.

The initial output from the two wells is expected to be an estimated 15,000 boe/d. Each of the reserves is estimated to hold about 4 MMbbl of recoverable oil with total recoverable reserves estimated at 9 MMboe, including gas, Aker BP said in a news release.

With development costs at about NOK 1.8 billion (US$211.6 million), work included the drilling of two wells, subsea installations, pipelines and hookup. The development, which consists of the Viper and Kobra discoveries but is considered part of the Alvheim Field, is tied back to the Alvheim FPSO vessel.

“The development comprises a new subsea installation with a pipeline tied into the Volund manifold,” Aker BP said in the release. “The four well slots are designated for one well from Viper and one from Kobra, in addition to two well slots intended for potential future wells in the area.”

Geir Solli, senior vice president of operations for Aker BP, called the project a small but important one for the company.

“Viper-Kobra leverages on the existing infrastructure in the Alvheim area, thus ensuring maximum utilization of the adjacent resources and will contribute to maintain the Alvheim production at a high level,” Solli said.

Alvheim license operator Aker BP has a 65% interest with partners ConocoPhillips (20%) and Lundin Norway (15%).

Danos Fabricates Boarding Valve Skids For Appomattox

Louisiana-based Danos said it has completed the fabrication of three boarding valve skids and one service line skid for Shell’s deepwater Appomattox facility.

Requiring about 12 months to complete, the project engaged four Danos service lines, including project management, fabrication, coatings, and automation, the company said in a news release.

“Delivery of this project marks Danos’ entry into the module fabrication market,” Mark Danos, vice president of project services, said in the statement. The project was delivered on budget.

The skids, weighing in at approximately 160 tons each, were fabricated at Danos’ facility in Amelia, La. Key design elements of the modules included 12,200 psi design pressure and 350˚F operating temperature requirements. The API 15K psi piping system consisted of 4130 material overlaid with Inconel 625, according to the release.

Xodus Secures FEED Contract For Midia Gas Development

Black Sea Oil & Gas SRL and partners have awarded the FEED contract for the offshore and onshore facilities for the development of Ana and Doina gas discoveries on the XV Midia Shallow Block, offshore Romania, to Xodus Group, according to a news release.

FEED services to be provided by Xodus include engineering and design for the development that consists of a wellhead platform (jacket) receiving and supporting production from a subsea tieback from Doina subsea well controlled through umbilical; an infield pipeline from the Doina subsea well to the Ana wellhead platform and an offshore export pipeline from the Ana platform to shore.

Services will also cover an onshore pipeline to a gas treatment plant and the gas treatment plant itself, the release said.

Mexico Finalizes Terms For First Deepwater Project

Mexico’s oil regulator approved on Nov. 4 a final set of business-friendly tweaks to bid rules for a highly anticipated upcoming auction that will pick a partner for state oil company Pemex to develop its first-ever deepwater project.

The joint venture (JV) covers Pemex’s Trion Field and marks a major step in the opening up of Mexico’s oil industry, a process enabled by a landmark energy reform in 2013 that permits Pemex to enter E&P JVs for the first time.

Trion is located at a depth of 2,500 m (8,202 ft) in the Gulf’s Perdido Fold Belt just south of Mexico’s maritime border with the U.S. The field is believed to contain some 480 MMboe.

Among the final changes to the bid terms, the oil regulator, known as the CNH, voted to eliminate a provision in the joint operating agreement that would have given Pemex the power to unilaterally remove the oil company chosen to operate the project.

The CNH also voted to eliminate a cash bond that was included in the joint operating agreement, leaving just a bond set out in the license contract as well as specifying that the operator will have the “decisive vote” in the event of any work program disagreements.

The CNH previously voted to lower Pemex’s minimum stake in the project from 45% to 40%.

The license contract, similar to a concession, will be awarded on Dec. 5, the same day that the regulator also will auction 10 separate deepwater fields, including four that surround Trion.

Pemex has estimated the Trion project will require a total investment of about $11 billion.

Stella Coasts Into Final Stages

Ithaca Energy reported that its Greater Stella Area development is progressing as the FPF-1 floating production facility has been towed to the field and moored on location with dynamic risers and umbilical connecting the subsea infrastructure to the vessel installed.

An update on the development, located in the Central Graben area of the North Sea, was given during the company’s third-quarter 2016 earnings report.

Technip has finished the subsea commissioning program for the development, and all infield flowlines have been flushed and are ready for production to begin, the company said.

“Connection and operational trials for the ‘single anchor loading’ system also have been completed for the fleet of shuttle tankers that are available for oil exports from the FPF-1,” Ithaca said in a news release. “The FPF-1 offshore commissioning program is ongoing, involving preparation of the topsides processing and utility systems for the introduction of hydrocarbons.”

Among the essential remaining work is the manufacture and installation of pipeline export pumps on the FPF-1 facility and final subsea connections needed prior to the switchover, the company said.

First hydrocarbons from the development are expected near the end of November 2016.

Technip Wins Umbilical Supply Contract In US GoM

Technip SA said Nov. 10 its wholly owned subsidiary Technip Umbilicals Inc. was awarded a contract to supply a subsea control umbilical in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico (GoM).

The contract was with an undisclosed major operator, according to the press release.

The contract includes the project management and manufacture of several kilometers of a static and dynamic unarmored steel tube umbilical.

Technip Umbilicals facility in Houston will manufacture the project for the high-pressure field, which is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

Aker BP Taps Altus Intervention For Services At Alvheim

Aker BP has awarded Altus Intervention a frame agreement contract for well intervention services consisting of cased-hole wireline, slickline and tractor services on three production wells and one exploration well on the Alvheim Field, the company said in a news release.

The agreement, which runs for three years, has options that could extend the agreement to a total of nine years.

Startup of the field, located in the central part of the North Sea, is scheduled for mid-December 2016.

Sonangol Begins Operations At Mafumeira Project

Sonangol EP and its Block Zero partners have begun Early Production System (EPS) operations at the South Wellhead Platform of the Mafumeira Sul project offshore Angola’s Cabinda province, according to a news release.

EPS will operate with a maximum production capacity of 10,000 bbl/d, marking an important step in efforts to increase domestic oil production, the company said.
Mafumeira Sul is located in a water depth of about 60 m (200 ft).

Partners involved in the project are Cabinda Gulf Oil Co. Ltd., Total E&P Angola and Eni Angola.

Petrobras: Consortium Completes First Libra Block Well

The Libra Consortium has completed the first well in the Libra oil field, located in Brazil’s Santos Basin, Petrobras said in a news release.

Drilled by the West Carina rig, the 3-RJS-739A well—also called NW3—is now ready to produce oil and natural gas. The well lies in the northwestern section of the block in a water depth of 1,951 m (6,401 ft).

“The NW3 has been fitted with an intelligent dual-zone system to facilitate real-time control and production monitoring,” Petrobras said. “It will start production in 2017, connected to Pioneiro de Libra FPSO [vessel], during the first Libra extended well test.”

The Libra Consortium is formed by operator Petrobras (40%), Shell (20%), Total (20%), CNPC (10%) and CNOOC (10%). The production-sharing contract will be managed by state-owned Pré-Sal Petróleo S.A.

Saipem Lands $1 Billion In EPIC Contracts

Saudi Aramco has awarded Saipem two engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) contracts for activities relating to the development of the Marjan, Zuluf and Safaniya fields in the Arabian Gulf, according to a news release.

Saipem said new contracts and change orders awarded to the company total about $1 billion.

The contracts, which are part of a long-term agreement in force and renewed in 2015 until 2021, cover the design, EPCI and implementation of subsea systems in addition to the laying of pipelines, subsea cables and umbilicals, platform decks and jackets, Saipem said in the release.

The company added that the two contracts also will include additional maintenance and dismantling works on the existing platforms already operating in the fields.

Chevron Begins Production At UK Alder Field

Chevron North Sea Ltd. has started production at the HP/HT Alder gas condensate field in the Central North Sea.

Alder is a single subsea well tied back via a 28-km (17-mile) pipeline to the existing ConocoPhillips-operated Britannia Platform, in which Chevron holds a 32.38% nonoperated working interest. The project has a planned design capacity of 3.1 MMcm (110 MMcf) of natural gas and 14,000 bbl of condensate per day. Production from the Alder Field is expected to ramp up over the coming months.

More than 70% of the Alder development work was executed by U.K.-based companies, providing significant investment to the U.K. supply chain. The contracts supported several hundred jobs across a range of U.K. locations including Aberdeen, Invergordon, Leeds and Newcastle.

Discovered in 1975, the development has been enabled through the application of innovative subsea technologies designed to meet the temperature and pressure challenges of Alder. Key technologies have included a number of firsts for Chevron in the North Sea, including a vertical mono-bore subsea tree system; a subsea high-integrity pressure protection system; and a specially designed corrosion monitoring system to measure the real-time condition of the production pipeline.

Alder is operated by Chevron North Sea Ltd. (73.7%) with ConocoPhillips (U.K.) Ltd. (26.3%).

FMC, Technip, Aker Land Contracts For Trestakk Development

FMC Technologies and Technip have been selected to jointly deliver engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) services for the Statoil-operated Trestakk development in the Norwegian Sea.

The EPCI contract covers subsea, umbilicals, risers, flowlines—including subsea template, manifold, subsea trees, completion system, wellheads, pipelines, risers, control systems, control cable and marine operations, Statoil said in a news release Nov. 4.

Statoil also awarded a contract to Aker Solutions for Åsgard topside work for the development. The Åsgard A production vessel will be modified to receive oil and gas from the Trestakk Field, Statoil said. Work involves piping to connect the wellstream to the vessel and upgrading of the metering systems.

Statoil is the operator of the license with a 59.1% stake with partners Exxon Mobil Exploration and Production Norway (33%) and Eni (7.9%).

—Staff, Reuters & Business Wire Reports