BHP hires McDermott for Trion floating production unit pre-FEED

U.S. offshore engineering and construction company McDermott has been awarded a sizeable contract by BHP to provide pre-front-end engineering design (pre-FEED) services for a floating production unit (FPU) that will be installed at the Trion field offshore Mexico. 

The FPU will be installed in a water depth of approximately 8,200 feet (2,500 meters) at the Trion field, located approximately 19 miles (30 kilometers) south of the U.S./Mexico border and approximately 112 miles (180 kilometers) from the Mexican coastline.

McDermott defines a sizeable contract as between $1 million and $50 million.

The engineering company said on Monday that the pre-FEED scope includes engineering tasks related to the configuration, sizing and preliminary analysis of the FPU, including topsides, hull, risers and mooring.

McDermott added it will work in partnership with Houston Offshore Engineering (HOE) and Wood on the pre-FEED, with McDermott’s Houston office leading engineering services—supported by its Mexico City office—and HOE and Wood providing engineering for the hull and topsides, respectively.

McDermott will perform project management, execution planning and estimation services. Installation studies will be performed by McDermott’s Marine Operations and technical support for fabrication and integration planning will be handled by McDermott’s Mexico-based Altamira Fabrication Yard.

The project will begin immediately with completion projected in the third quarter of 2020. The contract award will be reflected in McDermott’s first quarter 2020 backlog.

BHP holds a 60 per cent interest (and operatorship) in Trion and Pemex holds the remaining 40 per cent interest.

It is worth mentioning that BHP selected SBM Offshore, TechnipFMC, and McDermott to deliver an early engineering study for the semi-submersible FPU for the Trion field back in early March.

BHP said on March 7 that the design contracts had been awarded following a competitive tender process. The work is anticipated to be completed within six months.

BHP said last November it was targeting a project breakeven of below $50 per barrel of oil equivalent. Project sanction is possible from the 2022 financial year, with earliest first oil from 2025.

The company plans to conduct additional exploration drilling in the Trion block in FY 2021.