Modules ready for world’s first subsea gas compressor
Norway’s Aker Solutions is set to deliver the modules for the world’s first subsea gas compression system at the Statoil-operated Åsgard field. The facility, scheduled to come on stream in 2015, will enable the recovery of an additional 282 million barrels of oil equivalents.
The modules will be assembled into two trains that will each hold a compressor. They will be placed in an 1,800-tonne steel frame that was installed at the Norwegian Sea field in July last year. The modules for the first train will be delivered in installments from now through January. The second train and compressors will be delivered in the first quarter of next year.
The compression system will boost gas pressures at the Midgard and Mikkel satellite deposits in the Norwegian Sea to potentially extend Åsgard’s production life by as many as 20 years.
“The groundbreaking technology at Åsgard brings us one crucial step closer to placing a fully-functioning production and processing system on the seafloor,” said Per Harald Kongelf, head of Aker Solutions in Norway. “This will be a game-changer for the industry that makes it possible to increase recovery and lower costs at subsea fields.”
Extending Field Life
Gas compressors are used to keep up output as reservoir pressure at gas-producing fields drops over time. While such compressors have typically been installed on platforms over sea level, Aker Solutions explains, placing them on the seabed and near the wellheads improves recovery rates and reduces capital and operating costs. Subsea compression also leaves a smaller environmental footprint and is safer to operate than a platform, Aker Solutions says.
The Åsgard subsea gas compression facility is set to go on stream in 2015 after the two 11.5-megawatt compressors are installed. The project is operated by Statoil and delivered by Aker Solutions.