ALE completes Martin Linge modules load-out

Load-out of the utility module, weighing 9,580t; Image: ALE

ALE, a global heavy-lift specialist, has loaded-out two modules for the Martin Linge platform being built in South Korea.

ALE was contracted to perform both the weighing and load-out operations for the utility and process modules of the Martin Linge platform, to be deployed in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea.

The company said on Tuesday that its specialist division, ALE-Offshore Services, executed the weighings using ALE’s centrally-controlled synchronised weighing system and weightors. The utility module weighed in at 9,580 tonnes, and the process module weighed 10,850 tonnes.

The modules were then loaded-out onto the same vessel over a period of two months. The load-outs took place in two separate operations using a specialized skidding system.

Edwin Blosser, project engineer for ALE, said: “In consideration of the sheer size and scale of the piece, to perform the load-out was no mean feat. As the modules had a high center of gravity, it was extremely challenging to load them out onto the same vessel and control the vessel’s stability. We utilized a computerized skidding system to overcome this, as well as quay jacks to monitor the load.”

The operations took approximately three months to complete, finishing the final load-out in December 2017.

Total’s Martin Linge oil and gas field is located in the North Sea approximately 180 kilometers west of Bergen. The field’s development plan includes integrated wellhead, production, and accommodation platform with a jacket, in addition to a floating, storage and offloading (FSO) vessel used for oil storage.

The jacket substructure is already installed on location in the North Sea, while the topside is being completed at the Samsung yard in South-Korea. The project has experienced delays and cost increases due to delayed topside engineering, construction, and currency impact.

The project was also hit by a fatal accident at the Korean yard in May 2017, when six people died, forcing Total to delay production start for the first half of 2019.