Scottish subsea surveys provider gets on board US carbon capture and storage project

Scottish subsea surveys provider gets on board US carbon capture and storage project

Scottish subsea surveys and inspections provider Sulmara has been appointed to deliver an offshore geophysical survey for a carbon capture and storage project (CCS) in the U.S.

Source: Sulmara

Sulmara was commissioned by Bayou Bend CCS, a joint venture of Chevron, Talos Energy and Equinor, to conduct an archaeological and geohazard assessment of the proposed Bayou Bend pipeline route from the landfall to the future offshore platform locations.

The WAM-V 16 uncrewed surface vessel (USV) was used for the high-resolution geophysical survey, as well as the SpaceX-backed Starlink satellite system to ensure strong communications between the shore and the USV.

According to Sulmara Project Manager Darius Rivera, the quality of the data gathered is some of the best the company has seen from a USV.

“Launching the USV proved challenging given the time of year with the higher winds and seas. However, I am delighted we were able to overcome these issues and provide Bayou Bend CCS with such valuable data,” Rivera said.

“With the survey area around 15km from shore, we integrated the WAM-V with Starlink to achieve higher speed communications with the mobile remote command centre. This is the first time we have been able to go beyond the 3km mark with this size USV, ensuring improved quality of data and reducing the time needed to collect the information when compared to a conventional survey vessel.”

The Bayou Bend joint venture is proposing to store CO2 from industrial sources in the Houston Ship Channel and the Beaumont/Port Arthur areas to support local, regional, and national lower carbon ambitions.

The project, which envisages the development of a CCS facility in Southeast Texas, is the first offshore stratigraphic well for CCS in U.S. state waters and has the potential to reduce emissions from regional industrial facilities by sequestering CO2 permanently underground.

Chevron is the operator of the project with a 50% stake, with TotalEnergies and Equinor each owning a 25% share.

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