MODEC and Toray unveil FPSO and FSO repair technique
Japan’s MODEC and Toray Industries have pooled resources to develop a carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) patch technique for repairs on floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO), and floating storage and offloading (FSO) vessels for offshore oil and gas assets.
MODEC, which plans to put this CFRP patch technique to use for pitting corrosion repair in 2024, highlights that the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) approved this technique for repairing areas with diameters of up to 300 millimeters that have suffered damage from pitting corrosion.
As the development of a repair technique that facilitates the efficient deployment of materials and equipment offshore without hot work is perceived to be vital to ensure that FPSO and FSO maintenance takes place without interruption to oil and gas production, the duo jointly developed a vacuum-assisted resin transfer molding (VaRTM) process for CFRP repairs in 2020. ABS approved applying CFRP to steel to restore its mechanical strength.
MODEC and Toray explain that this process was less suitable for pitting corrosion repairs even though it was “excellent” for repairing large corrosion areas. With this at the forefront, the companies claim that the new CFRP patch technique is “a more straightforward and more effective solution” in such cases.
Furthermore, the new solution only requires bonding prefabricated CFRP patch flat plates over pitting corrosion, thereby reducing the workforce by half and improving lead times – referring to onsite times compared with the VaRTM process and excluding materials procurement lead times.
MODEC and Toray underline that the technique eliminates the need for vacuum pumps and other equipment and streamlines the process of transporting reinforcement materials and construction tools onboard. In addition, it ensures minimal disruption in oil and gas production because it eliminates the need for hot work.
The two players will cater to the diverse corrosion repair needs of FPSO and FSO operators by offering the in-situ VaRTM technique for extensive repairs and the CFRP patch technique for localized repairs.
According to MODEC, the dup intends to continue developing repair technologies for these vessels to “promptly address market needs while tackling environmental and other social issues to contribute to a sustainable economy.”
Recently, MODEC and Terra Drone Corporation got their hands on – what is said to be – the world’s first approval from the American Bureau of Shipping for a drone-based FPSO hull thickness measurement.