Photo: Hitachi Energy /Aker BP, Equinor and LOTOS

Aker BP selects technology partner for NOAKA project

Swiss technology firm Hitachi Energy has been selected by the Norwegian oil and gas company Aker BP as a technology partner for the NOAKA power-from-shore project offshore Norway.

Under the contract, Hitachi will perform detailed front-end engineering and design (FEED) studies for a power quality solution that will enable the Aker BP operated NOA Fulla field and the Equinor operated Krafla field in the North Sea to be powered from the mainland.

Additionally, the contract includes an option to deliver the power quality solution when the FEED studies are completed.

The entire project will be powered by up to 150 megawatts of power from the mainland grid, which is said to be the world’s longest power-from-shore AC connection at around 250 kilometres.

The Swiss company plans to deploy what it claims to be the world’s first solution that will combine two power quality technologies to ensure the smooth, reliable and safe transmission of electricity to the offshore platforms.

Hitachi Energy’s proposed solution comprises a new grid connection to house the STATCOM, thyristor-controlled series capacitors, shunt reactors and gas-insulated switchgear. The solution will also increase the transmission capacity of an existing 420 kV mainland grid connection with new gas-insulated switchgear and a power transformer, the company explained.

“We are delighted that Aker BP has selected our pioneering power quality solution, enabling this vital energy project to be powered with emission-free renewable energy”, said Niklas Persson, managing director of Hitachi Energy’s Grid Integration business.

“This world-first solution will also enable progress toward mega-scale offshore renewable power installations, offering viable alternative pathways for connecting power from shore with AC over long distances.”

Commenting on the project, Lars Høier, senior vice president and asset manager for NOAKA at Aker BP, said: “Our ambition is to develop the NOAKA area with a minimum carbon footprint and a prerequisite for this is that the fields are supplied with power-from-shore. We selected Hitachi Energy as our trusted technology partner to provide a reliable and flexible grid connection and power quality solution to secure high reliability in our operations.”

Located between Oseberg and Alvheim in the Norwegian North Sea, the NOAKA area holds several oil and gas discoveries with gross recoverable resources estimated at more than 500 million barrels of oil equivalents, with further exploration and appraisal potential. Aker BP and Equinor will jointly develop and operate NOAKA, with LOTOS Exploration and Production Norge as a license partner.

Offshore contractor Subsea 7 is undertaking the FEED study for the marine installations associated with the Krafla development project while Aibel was awarded a FEED contract for the unmanned processing platform at the field. The study is supposed to form the basis for tying an unmanned platform to the Aker BP-operated platform on the NOA field.

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