Gumusut-Kakap: Asia’s Largest Offshore Facility Being Installed at Project Site
A semi submersible floating production system for Malaysia’s Gumusut-Kakap deepwater field has been successfully delivered to be installed at the project development site offshore Sabah.
The Gumusut-Kakap field is Malaysia’s second deepwater development after the Kikeh oil field, also offshore Sabah.
The semi-FPS, the largest of such facility in the world to have been fully built and integrated on land, left the Malaysia Marine and Heavy Engineering Sdn Bhd (MMHE) yard in Pasir Gudang, Johor on 13 May 2013 and sailed to Desaru waters where a sea trial and an inclination test were completed on 24 May 2013.
It was handed over to Sabah Shell Petroleum Company Ltd on 3 June 2013, which operates the field in partnership with PETRONAS Carigali Sdn Bhd, ConocoPhilips Sabah Ltd and Murphy Sabah Oil Co. Ltd. The semi-FPS then made a 1,480km journey to arrive at the field on 12 June 2013.
The semi-FPS is now in the process of being installed at the site and mooring was successfully completed on 24 June 2013. Once installed, it will be the largest offshore operating facility not only in Malaysia but in Asia.
The successful fabrication and delivery of the semi-FPS showcases the capability of Malaysia’s fabricators and integrated service providers in undertaking the construction of a FPS of this scale.
“This project and its achievement is attributed to the collaborative effort of PETRONAS, Shell, Murphy, ConocoPhilips as well as PETRONAS Carigali, supported by the capability and technical know-how of MISC Bhd and MMHE,” said Tan Sri Dato’ Shamsul Azhar Abbas, President & Group CEO of PETRONAS.
The semi-FPS also solidifies MISC’s aspiration of being a preferred offshore floating facility solutions provider and further demonstrates its capability and experience in undertaking floating solution projects. MISC is the Engineering, Procurement and Construction contract holder for the project and undertook full project management scope and responsibility. MMHE, which constructed the semi-FPS, is a subsidiary of Malaysia Marine and Heavy Engineering Holdings Bhd (MHB) and a member of the MISC Group.
“The completion of this project is a testimony to MISC and MMHE’s growing capabilities in the engineering and construction of floating production facilities,” said Datuk Nasarudin Md Idris, President/CEO of MISC Bhd and Chairman of MHB.
The semi-FPS project was geared towards bringing in not only significant foreign direct investment but also transfer of technology to Malaysia in line with PETRONAS’ objectives to continuously nurture and develop local capability and capacity towards making and promoting Malaysia as a regional deepwater development hub.
The offshore installation and commissioning activities are being undertaken by SSPC. The semi-FPS has been anchored in a water depth of about 1,200 metres and will initially service seven sub-sea manifolds in the Gumusut-Kakap field. Designed to remain on station in the field for 30 years, the semi-FPS has the potential to act as a hub for other possible sub-sea facilities.
The Gumusut-Kakap field’s full development system comprises 19 subsea wells which are linked to a permanent structure of the semi-FPS and an oil export pipeline that will bring crude oil to the Sabah Oil and Gas Terminal in Kimanis, Sabah. The system has the design capacity to process up to 150,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day.
The project has provided Malaysia with the opportunity and platform to develop its deepwater capabilities and expertise. The deepwater environment is a challenging one and the success of the Gumusut-Kakap semi-FPS leveraged on strengths, resources and infrastructure derived from deepwater expertise already existing in Malaysia, strengthening the nation’s position as a regional deepwater hub.
The Gumusut-Kakap semi-FPS comprises a hull and topsides. The hull was designed by Shell and weighs approximately 19,000 MT. It has a storage capacity of 20,000 barrels of crude oil, 2,582 barrels of methanol, 4,145 barrels of diesel and 7,122 barrels of potable water.
On 5th May 2013, the semi-FPS was successfully loaded-out using a “skidding” method onto a single heavy lift vessel, the Blue Marlin. A buoyancy tank about 105m x 40m in dimension was inserted between the Blue Marlin and the semi-FPS to provide additional buoyancy for its dry-tow to a float-off location at Desaru, where a sea-trial and inclination test was carried out. Prior to the inclination test, the semi- FPS was discharged from both the Blue Marlin and the buoyancy tank.
This is the biggest structure ever undertaken by MMHE and was successfully constructed utilising approximately 40 million man-hours and the direct involvement of approximately 5,000 personnel.
The topsides which weigh around 20,000 MT were designed by Technip GeoProduction (M) Sdn Bhd. The structure comprises four main integrated modules (South, North, East, and West). The topsides are also equipped with a 140-man Permanent Living Quarters, 132-man Temporary Living Quarters and 11 Technical Buildings (including Production, Subsea, Flash Gas Control, Switchgear, Warehouse and Generator Buildings). The topsides can accommodate 19 well slots and has the processing capacity of 150,000 barrels per day of crude oil, 300 million standard cubic feet of gas re-injection per day and 225,000 barrels of water per day.
The four topsides modules were assembled and lifted on shore by a super lift methodology using lifting towers and strand jacks while the hull blocks consisting of column and pontoon were erected in sections at the skid rail adjacent to the topsides modules. The topsides and hull structures were then integrated on land by raising the modules through the super lift frame 45 metres from the ground. The super lift was the largest onshore topsides lift in the world and required the design and fabrication of a special purpose lifting assembly. The hull was then skidded beneath the topsides for all the components to be fully assembled. The topsides modules were then lowered down and secured onto the hull.