Inpex starts up gas production at Ichthys

Japan’s Inpex has started production of gas from its operated Ichthys LNG Project in Australia.

Inpex said on Monday that the production of gas from the wellhead started following the completion of final safety verifications including additional verifications concerning electrical equipment.

The produced gas will be gathered within the Central Processing Facility (Ichthys Explorer) where it will be separated into gases and liquids.

Thereafter, the liquids will be piped to the nearby Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) facility (Ichthys Venturer) while the gases will be transported via the 890-kilometer long Gas Export Pipeline (GEP) to the onshore gas liquefaction plant at Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory.

At the FPSO, the condensate contained in the well fluids will be processed to remove water and other impurities, then stored in tanks prior to export by tankers. At the onshore gas liquefaction plant, gases will be processed to remove impurities after which any remaining condensate will be extracted. The gases will then be separated and liquefied to produce liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) to be stored in tanks and shipped in sequence.

As previously reported, the project expects to begin the shipment of products towards the end of the first half of the current fiscal year, which ends in September 2018.

Inpex, as the operator, has a 62.245% interest in the Ichthys LNG project. Its partners are Total (30%), CPC Corporation, Taiwan (2.625%), Tokyo Gas (1.575%), Osaka Gas (1.2%), Kansai Electric Power (1.2%), JERA (0.735%) and Toho Gas (0.42%).

In a separate statement on Monday, Arnaud Breuillac, President Exploration & Production at Total, commented: “The start-up of production on Ichthys is a major achievement. Ichthys will be an important addition to Total’s portfolio in the fast growing LNG market and will also contribute to the Group’s production and cash flow growth in the coming years.”

According to Total, at full capacity, the offshore facilities are expected to produce 1,600 mmscfd of gas (285,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day) and 85,000 barrels of condensate per day.

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