N05-A topside; Source: HSM Offshore Energy

Dutch player rolls out topside for offshore wind-powered North Sea gas platform

The Netherlands-based integrated engineering, procurement, construction, installation, and commissioning (EPCIC) solutions provider HSM Offshore Energy has launched the topside piece of a gas platform, which will be deployed in the Dutch sector of the North Sea and run on offshore wind power.

N05-A topside; Source: HSM Offshore Energy

After winning a contract in 2022 to build ONE-Dyas’ N05-A gas production platform, HSM Offshore Energy started the ball rolling on the fabrication of the North Sea platform at its yard in Schiedam. The Dutch player’s latest platform construction feat entails the rollout of the N05-A topside at its yard, which came two days after the upper part of the jacket was lifted on its lower counterpart.

The company sees the topside as a new era of its commitment to accelerate local Dutch gas production while showcasing its role in the offshore energy transition since the platform will run entirely on offshore renewable energy from the nearby 113.4 MW Riffgat offshore wind farm, which was built by EWE in 2013 as the first commercially operated wind farm in the German part of the North Sea.

As a result, the N05-A topside is expected to enhance ONE-Dyas’s operations, optimizing production efficiency and minimizing environmental impact. For HSM Offshore Energy, the topside launch and the the jacket lifting operations represent an important step in harnessing local Dutch offshore energy resources, as the N05-A platform will be the first electrified gas production platform in the North Sea, upon completion.

Hans Leerdam, Commercial Director of HSM Offshore Energy, commented: “The N05-A topside is a milestone for our company. It embodies our dedication to innovation, sustainability, and operational excellence. Local gas production is key for the Dutch economy and needed to smoothen the energy transition.”

In August 2017, ONE-Dyas discovered the N05-A field, partly located in the Dutch North Sea and partly in the German North Sea. Following the final permits for the N05-A gas project in June 2022, the operator made a final investment decision in September 2022 for the development of the field, revealing an investment of more than EUR 500 million (about $482 million). Allseas and N-Sea are among the companies hired to work on this project.

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The N05-A project concerns the development of an offshore platform, consisting of topsides and a six-legged non-battered jacket with ten well slots, including eight producing and two spare slots, with an installed production capacity of 6 MNm3/day, including an allowance for production via incoming risers of 2.5 MNm3/day. The topside will weigh 3,200 tons, the jacket 2,800 tons, and piles 1,800 tons.

Moreover, the Dutch company will develop the N05-A field with a not normally manned installation (NNMI) and autonomous production location (APL) gas/condensate production process. The living quarters will be designed as a permanent manned installation and the platform will be operated as a NNMI. The export route is a pipeline to a side tap in the NGT.

Chris de Ruyter van Steveninck, CEO of ONE-Dyas, highlighted: “We are glad to execute such significant energy projects in the Netherlands. The retention of knowledge and infrastructure within the country is crucial as we navigate the energy transition. Our collaboration with HSM Offshore Energy and other involved partners serves as an exemplary model of the Dutch manufacturing economy in action.”

The N05-A project is part of the so-called GEMS area located approximately 20 to 80 kilometers north of the Ems estuary. The produced volume from the N05-A field and surrounding prospects is expected to be 4.5 to 13 billion Nm3.

N05-A topside; Source: HSM Offshore Energy

ONE-Dyas, together with partners Hansa Hydrocarbons and EBN, aims to extract natural gas from the N05-A field and the surrounding ones in the German and Dutch North Sea. The operator plans to deliver the first natural gas to Dutch and German households by the end of 2024.

Even though the N05-A platform will not be the first in the North Sea to run on wind energy, it will be the first to do so entirely, since the Hywind Tampen floating wind farm – which came online in 2022 is intended to cover 35% of the annual power needs on the five platforms in the Snorre and Gullfaks offshore oil and gas fields on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS).