MODEC puts Swiss player in charge of topside and hull electrical systems for ExxonMobil’s Guyana-bound FPSO
Switzerland-based electrification and automation technology provider ABB has been hired by Singapore’s Offshore Frontier Solution, a joint venture between Japan’s MODEC and Toyo Engineering Corporation, for the delivery of a complete electrical system and associated digital solutions on a floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel, which is destined to work on ExxonMobil’s fifth oil development in the Stabroek block located offshore Guyana, South America.
ABB’s latest contract is related to the FPSO Errea Wittu, which will be located on ExxonMobil’s Uaru project – the oil major’s fifth development on the Stabroek block offshore Guyana. The Swiss company will provide a topside and hull electrical system to the vessel through a pre-built ABB eHouse modular substation. Commissioning, installing, and testing all electrical systems at the shipyard before deployment offshore is said to reduce risk exposure and costs, enabling faster speed to market.
In addition, the firm will supply power management solutions that will serve to optimize energy efficiency and asset availability of all electrical equipment supplied. This assignment, booked in 2Q 2023, marks the fourteenth collaboration between ABB and MODEC on FPSO developments across South America.
While ExxonMobil sanctioned Uaru in April 2023, the project’s start-up is slated for 2026 with an initial production capacity of 250,000 barrels of oil per day and an associated gas treatment capacity of 540 million standard cubic feet per day. This FPSO will be operated approximately 200 kilometers off the coast of Guyana, combining the development of the Snoek, Mako, and Uaru resources in the Stabroek block.
Brandon Spencer, President of ABB Energy Industries, commented: “The FPSO market in South America is growing exponentially driven by the fact that floating platforms are a more cost-efficient, quicker, mobile, and sustainable solution to traditional rigs. Guyana is at the forefront of this growth, and we are thrilled to contribute our technology to help bring this fifth development for ExxonMobil in Guyana to market quickly and efficiently.”
This contract award comes only days after MODEC selected Jumbo Offshore Installation Contractors for the pre-installation of the mooring spread of the FPSO Errea Wittu. The $12.7 billion Uaru development targets an estimated resource base of more than 800 million barrels of oil and includes up to 10 drill centers and 44 production and injection wells.
After securing a FEED contract for the Uaru FPSO, MODEC got the green light to proceed with the engineering, procurement, construction, and installation (EPCI) scope for the vessel in May 2023. ExxonMobil is set on having six FPSOs on the Stabroek block by year-end 2027, with the potential for up to ten FPSOs to develop the estimated gross discovered recoverable resources of more than 11 billion barrels of oil equivalent.
The South American FPSO market is on the rise alongside the global FPSO market, which is estimated to reach $20 billion in 2027, according to a report by The Insight Partners. Rystad Energy underlines that Guyana is second only to Brazil in the number of new FPSO projects set to kick off operations. The country is expected to produce 1.7 million barrels of oil per day by 2035, which would make it the fourth-largest offshore oil producer in the world.
Furthermore, ABB’s ‘Energy Transition Equation’ report for the offshore oil and gas sector offers insights into how FPSO operators can slash their carbon footprint by up to 320,000 tons per site each year through the application of electrification, automation, and digital technologies, which enable a move to minimally crewed operations.
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