December 2020, Vol. 247, No. 12


Neptune Installing World’s Longest Heated Production Pipeline

Special to P&GJ 

Neptune Energy began installation of the world’s longest heated subsea production pipeline in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea.   

Installation of a 5.5-mile section of the pipeline. Photo: Neptune
Installation of a 5.5-mile section of the pipeline. Photo: Neptune

Once completed, the 23-mile (36-km) electrically trace-heated (ETH) pipe-in-pipe solution will transport oil from the Neptune Energy-operated Fenja field to the Njord A platform, operated by Equinor.   

The first phase of the installation saw a 5.5-mile (9-km) section safely installed and successfully tested.   

“The installation and testing of the ETH pipe is a great technical achievement, as well as a milestone in the development of the Fenja field,” said Neptune Director of Projects and Engineering in Norway Erik Oppedal. “The heated pipe-in-pipe solution permits us to tie the field back to existing infrastructure, keeping costs low.”  

The length of the ETH pipeline is a significant technological achievement and was developed and qualified through a collaborative approach with TechnipFMC. Due to the high wax content of the Fenja field’s oil, the contents of the pipeline must be warmed up to a temperature above 82 degrees F (28 degrees C) before starting the flow after a shutdown. During normal production, the temperature in the pipeline is well above this temperature.   

“This technology step change has been made possible by the extraordinary effort of TechnipFMC and excellent cooperation with Neptune Energy,” said Ståle Ryggvik, TechnipFMC’s project director. “It will unlock possibilities to develop future projects with difficult reservoir properties. We are looking forward to continuing the project and completing the installation in 2021.”   

The offshore installation was carried out by TechnipFMC’s vessel, Deep Energy, approximately 75 miles (120 km) north of Kristiansund, Norway, at a water depth of about 1,050 feet (320 meters). Partners in the project are Neptune Energy (operator, 30%), Vår Energi, (45%), Suncor Energy (17.5%) and DNO (7.5%).   


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