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ElSayed, Mohamed Salah (PETROBEL) | Zayed, Samir (PETROBEL) | Tolba, Mohamed Ahmed (PETROBEL) | Omar, Muhammad Karam (PETROBEL) | Hussein, Ola Amr (Schlumberger) | Darwish, Hatem Mohamed (Schlumberger) | Negm, Mohamed Nagy (Schlumberger)
Offshore oil and gas fields have gained tremendous importance for the world's energy supply. Our ability to tap into these reserves is one of the main reasons that the predictions of the "Club of Rome" in 1972 about diminishing hydrocarbon reserves and "limits to growth" turned out to be pessimistic. As the transport of oil and gas products in a multiphase manner is increasingly stretched over greater distances with development in more hostile environments, especially when designing large-scale ultradeepwater production network, it is mandatory to ensure sustaining reliable and robustness operations as the access to subsea infrastructure becomes increasingly limited and to reduce the influence on the downstream facilities. An integrated multiphase dynamic model was used to optimize operating procedures for initial well cleanup and ramp-up to production from a sizeable deepwater production system before first gas. This approach was essential to create and test startup scenarios given several well and reservoir uncertainties.
Zohr subsea production system (Accelerated Start Up Phase) is made by 6 wells connected via individual rigid production infield flowlines to two chained Main Subsea Structures. Gas is exported to onshore El Gamil plant through a piggable export sealine connected to the one of the two Main Subsea Structures.
In total 218 km of pipes 30inch to Zohr onshore plant El Gamil pipeline. Pipeline material and dimension combination required for the Zohr project is unique in its kind and the combination of requirements has not been produced before, with demanding mechanical and corrosion tests and a new limit for pipeline exposed to sour service.
A certain number of Buckle arrestors (107 pieces) have been used along pipeline installation. The BAA are around 12 m long and are integrated by three sections; The central sections of thickness (75.8, 66.0 and 54.0mm) are seamless forged pieces produced with ASTM A707 Grade L5 Modified steel in quenched and tempered condition with mechanical properties equivalent to API 5L L415QS / L415QO material. The pup pieces are API 5L LSAW pipes Grade L415MS / L415MO.
During Manufacturing Process Qualification Testing (MPQT) Sulphide Stress Cracking Corrosion Test (SSC) have shown some cracks of test specimens. The specimen fails and SSC cracks were found in the post test analysis, i.e., by sectioning and performing metallography at X100. These specimens were tested in NACE TM0177 type A solution with 5% NaCl and 0.5% acetic acid, saturated with 1 bar H2S at an initial pH of 2.7. Exposure duration was 720 hours and the load to be applied was 90%. No indications or defects were assessed by NDT magnetic particle inspections on all the tested specimens.
Weld overlay of buckle arrestors assemblies (BAA) with alloy N06625 (nominal thickness 3 mm) cover the full length of the central section plus the circumferential welds (that are ground flush) and extending 100 mm on each side of the girth welds into the pup pieces.
It was a challenge to overcome these defect of these pipes considering the stringent requirements in the project specifications and the tight project schedule to achieve the installation campaign without any delay on project schedule.
The Optimized Ramp-Up phase envisages an extension of the Accelerated Start Up subsea system with four (4) additional wells, a new Main Subsea Structure (MSS3), a new Subsea Distribution Unit (SDU) and a piggable export pipeline (30" OD), parallel to the 26" Accelerated Start Up Phase (ASU) export line.
CNOOC, Several International Firms Sign Agreements for Areas Offshore China
China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) has signed strategic cooperation agreements with nine international firms for two offshore areas in the Pearl River Mouth Basin off China.
State-owned CNOOC said the agreements—which include Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Equinor, Husky, KUFPEC, Roc Oil, Shell, SK Innovation, and Total—are a first step in establishing what could be long-term cooperation on exploration and development of offshore Areas A and B. Each international firm has existing upstream operations in China.
The 15,300-sq-km Area A lies in 80–120 m of water. Firms are open to explore its deep layers below the Paleogene Enping formation. The 48,700-sq-km Area B lies in 500–3,000 m of water. Firms can explore each layer beneath the surface of that area.
How Does Vaca Muerta Stack Up vs. US Shale? Data Tell the Tale
Matt Zborowski, Technology Writer
For what seems like forever, the upstream universe has awaited the emergence of Argentina’s Vaca Muerta Shale as the international answer to US shale.
In many regards, it already holds its own. In others, there is still much work to be done. Either way, 2018 and 2019 will mark a promising step forward for the play, according to data from research and consulting firm Rystad Energy.
US shale plays grew exponentially during their development phases, with the number of horizontal wells completed shooting up year-to-year in their first 5 years of relevancy. Vaca Muerta shows potential for a similar activity surge given geology “as good or better than the majority of the US plays,” noted Ryan Carbrey, Rystad senior vice president, shale research, during a recent Vaca Muerta-focused webinar.
Global Oil and Gas Exploration, Project Sanctions Expected to Rise in 2019
Matt Zborowski, Technology Writer
Global discovered oil and gas resources and big project sanctions are expected to remain on the upswing through next year, according to separate industry outlooks from Rystad Energy and Wood Mackenzie.
Internalizing lessons from a difficult last few years, operators are choosing investments more wisely and are now better prepared to deal with volatile oil markets, the consultancies concluded. “Oil and gas companies can cope with whatever is thrown at them in 2019,” said Tom Ellacott, Wood Mackenzie senior vice president. “Portfolios are set to weather low prices, and the recent slide in prices justifies the sector’s conservative mindset.”
Straight Out of OPEC, Qatar Flexes Global Ambitions
Trent Jacobs, JPT Digital Editor
Fresh on the heels of its announcement to leave OPEC, Qatar is positioning itself to become an increasingly active player in global energy projects through minority partnerships with big explorers. Its most recent acquisition involves a 35% stake in Italian operating company Eni’s interest offshore Mexico.
Late last year Qatar said that it would withdraw its 57-year membership in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and focus on increasing its natural gas production. Qatar is currently the world’s third-largest supplier of liquefied natural gas (LNG) behind Australia and the US.
ExxonMobil Makes 10th Discovery Off Guyana, Lifts Resource Estimate by Another Billion Barrels
Matt Zborowski, Technology Writer
ExxonMobil’s Pluma-1 well off Guyana encountered 37 m of high-quality hydrocarbon-bearing sandstone reservoir, marking the firm’s 10th discovery in South America’s newest oil powerhouse.
Located 27 km south of the Turbot-1 discovery on the southeast portion of the 26,800-sq-km Stabroek Block, Pluma-1 was drilled to 5,013 m in 1,018 m of water by the Noble Tom Madden drillship, which spudded the well 1 November.
The major now estimates that its discovered recoverable resources for the block total 5 billion BOE, up 1 billion BOE from its previous estimate made over the summer, around the time that it announced its eighth discovery, Longtail, also on the southeast part of the block. Its ninth discovery came via the Hammerhead-1 well to the west.
Mexico’s Giant Zama Discovery Gets New Interest Owner
Matt Zborowski, Technology Writer
Germany’s DEA Deutsche Erdoel AG has agreed to acquire privately held Sierra Oil & Gas, interest owner in six blocks in Mexico, including the giant Zama discovery.
Sierra holds a 40% nonoperated interest in the 465-sq-km Block 7 containing much of the shallow-water Zama discovery, where appraisal drilling is under way. Zama is estimated to hold 400–800 million BOE of recoverable resources with estimated peak output of 150,000 BOE/D. Production is expected to start up by 2022–2023. Talos Energy is operator and Premier Oil is the other partner.
Total Begins Production From Nigeria’s Giant Egina Field
Total advanced its global deepwater campaign 29 December with the launch of production from the Egina Field 150 km offshore Nigeria.
The Egina floating production, storage, and offloading vessel, which Total says is its largest ever, will be connected to 44 subsea wells and produce up to 200,000 B/D of oil. The field lies in 1600 m of water on Oil Mining Lease (OML) 130.
Total says the project was developed 10% under budget, resulting in savings of more than $1 billion, driven in large part by a 30% reduction in average drilling time per well. The French major’s operating costs in Nigeria have been slashed by 40% during the last 4 years, Arnaud Breuillac, Total president, exploration and production, said in a news release.
Oil Prices Take a 2014-Size Hit
Stephen Rassenfoss, JPT Emerging Technology Senior Editor
Oil prices fell sharply in late 2018, similar to 4 years ago, but this time around oil companies seem better able to make money at these price levels.
The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) made those observations in a new report released in December, after a day of trading in which the benchmark US price closed at $47.20/bbl. Brent closed at $56.49/bbl.
Companies that survived the price downturn that began in 2014 are in better shape now. “Most measures of profitability and balance sheet fitness indicate companies should be able to weather the recent price downturn,” the EIA report said.
Exploration in 2018 got off to a strong start when the Chevron-operated Ballymore well encountered 205 m of net oil pay in the US Gulf of Mexico. Drilled by Pacific Drilling’s Sharav deepwater drillship, the well reached a total depth of 8,898 m. Global discovered oil and gas resources and big project sanctions are expected to remain on the upswing through next year, according to separate industry outlooks from Rystad Energy and Wood Mackenzie. Internalizing lessons from a difficult last few years, operators are choosing investments more wisely and now better prepared to deal with volatile oil markets, the consultancies concluded. "Portfolios are set to weather low prices, and the recent slide in prices justifies the sector’s conservative mindset."
The global oil industry appears poised returns with the goal of achieving said. Independent E&P companies are for stronger performance in 2018, having profitable growth within existing acreage likely to be attractive acquisition targets benefitted from the financial discipline and cash flows. The strong capital for larger independents and integrated and cost-cutting innovation driven by investment level of 2017 should lead to a oil companies. While oil prices have recently risen most exposure to quality oil acreage will In its most recent Capital Confidence above $60/bbl, likely reflecting a number achieve the best returns. Barometer survey report, professional of short-term supply disruptions Although the global oilfield services services firm EY said that 69% of oil and concerns over Middle East tensions, (OFS) industry will continue its recovery and gas executives surveyed indicated forecasts generally call for prices to fluctuate into 2018, the health of the sector will that their companies intended to pursue sustainably between $40/bbl and remain frail, as the impact of oversupplied acquisitions, an all-time high for the $60/bbl and end the year in the higher markets will offset higher equipment annual survey.
Phase 1 of the Zohr project includes six subsea wells. Gas is piped to Port Said onshore Egypt. Eni confirmed on 20 December that the Zohr field has started gas production from the Shorouk block offshore Egypt. The launch comes less than 2 1/2 years after the Italian firm discovered the enormous deposit, which is estimated to hold more than 30 Tcf of gas in place. The field is flowing 350 MMcf/D and is slated to produce 1 Bcf/d by the middle of next year, Egypt’s petroleum ministry said.
The first pipes for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline were delivered by rail on 27 October 2016 to the German logistics hub Mukran on the island of Rügen. New United States economic sanctions against Russia will place additional restrictions on international companies participating in oil projects with Russian companies. Although he was reluctant to do so, President Donald Trump signed the sanctions bill on 2 August after it had received overwhelming support in both houses of Congress. Place sanctions that prevent companies from participating in new projects with the potential to produce oil in Arctic and deepwater settings and shale formations, inside or outside of Russia, where a Russian company has a 33% or greater interest. Establish optional sanctions that could be imposed on companies facilitating or investing in Russian export pipelines.
The oil-price downturn has dominated Eni's Zohr gas discovery in the Mediterranean In addition, the prices have potential returns on investment. Optimism about a possible recovery Deepwater exploration-and-production From now until 2020, growth in the of oil prices has picked up recently in the activities are driven by a variety of deepwater market is expected to be constrained offshore energy industry, but I believe supply-and demand-side factors: as low oil prices increase pressure that 2017 and 2018 are going to be complicated The need to offset declining on project economics. Operators, and that this optimism may production from onshore and subsea manufacturers, and rig owners be premature. Africa a clear example However, decreasing drilling and The need to offset declining production Economic viability of deepwater equipment costs may provide a limited from mature basins, as well as the developments upside for sanctioning. Iversen serves on the JPT Editorial Committee and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.