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An Innovative Subsea Pipe Lay Method in South China Sea Abstract
By Chi Chen, Kai Zhang, TianXiao Yang, Xiong Ouyang, CNOOC Operating Company
China National Offshore Oil Co. (CNOOC) planed to replace the pipelines between the platform Panyu4-2 and Panyu5-1 in 2008. The existing pipelines were operational from 2003 and since then more than 10 leaks were discovered. The new pipelines are parallel to the existing ones. The Panyu oil field is located in South China Sea approximately 200 km south of Hong Kong. It is at Block 15/34 of the Pearl River Basin. Water depth at the field is approximately 100 meters, refer to Figure 1 for general layout of the field. The Panyu offshore facilities consist of a FPSO (including associated anchors, PLET and midwater arches), two platforms (Panyu 5-1 and, Panyu 4-2), the pipelines connecting both platforms to the PLET, and the subsea cable connecting platforms to the FPSO. Expansion bends with flanges are used to connect the PLET to the pipelines to PY4-2 and PY5-1 respectively. The pipeline connecting PY 5-1 goes underneath FPSO and passes the mooring system. The other pipeline to PY 4-2 starting at the Southwest side of FPSO_120 meters away from the center of mooring systems, and therefore, no interference with the mooring lines.
2.0 Installation Challenges
The FPSO must maintain normal operation during the pipeline installation and the challenge for the installation exists in two major aspects: a) The 500m radius safety zone from the center of FPSO needed to be ensured, b) The pipeline has to pass through underneath the FPSO and go below its mooring lines. Restriction of safety operation zone The 500m radius safety zone marks the extremities of the anchor pattern. The pipeline laying vessel shall not work within the safety zone due to potential anchor line interference. Pipeline go through underneath the FPSO The interference with the existing mooring system, dynamic cable system and riser system make the normal pipeline lay impossible and has to be laid with a alternative method.
Figure 1 Panyu Fields Location
In addition to the above two major challenges, the
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The length of each section of the dummy pipe and the laying distance from FPSO are the important to its design. The dummy pipe shall be pulled to its location underneath FPSO and its mooring lines by a steel wire called “DMA wire”. 4. Figure 3 shows the protection system. The positioning of DMA wire is ensured by a dead man anchor. In order to reduce the risk of laying vessel mooring line across FPSO mooring system. Figure 2 Dummy pipeline start laying location The DMA wire was divided into 6 pieces in order to be fit on small pipe-lay vessel. and which is the key element in dealing with all the challenges in this installation operation. section 2 was 53 m and section 3 was 1135 m. In addition to ensure 500m radius safety zone. the finial start point of dummy pipe was 800m away from FPSO and the total dummy pipe length was 1615m. 3) Suction Anchor The suction anchor rigging arrangement provided accurate positioning for the dummy pipe. and which are discussed in the following sections. 1) The Dummy Pipe The dummy pipe consisted of three sections: section 1 and section 3 are parts of the pipeline connect PLET and leaded to the pipelines to PY 4-2. All of the challenges need to be carefully evaluated and planned prior installation. the potential anchor line interference of the laying vessel and FPSO should be considered. 3. and the positioning of dummy pipe is by a suction anchor. the new pipelines must be accurately positioned to allow their connection to PLET and platforms. (See Figure2) 2) Hold back (Dead Man Anchor) DMA system Hold back DMA system designed to assist dummy pipeline laying and pulling. installation operation also faces the problems of protecting existing pipelines and cables as the new pipeline cross them. called “Dummy Pipe” is introduced. The section 2 was a temporary section to tie section 1 and section 3 together by flanges and it should be removed after the dummy pipe had been dragged to its proper location. The suction anchor was designed with 105 ton pulling resist. The system should be installed prior to dummy pipe lay and the load test should be performed on the dead man anchor (DMA) prior pipe lay to ensure its capacity. and the Figure 3 Pipeline/cable protection system 4) The Existing Facilities Protector Steel protection structures for existing cable and pipeline were installed prior to wire and pipe laying and pulling operations.0. For each piece DMA wire there were open and closed sockets attached at both ends. Mud mat and tyre girdle structures designed to prevent sinking or slipping occur. a connection cable was used to connect the dummy pipe termination head and suction anchor. PY 5-1 platforms. The length of connection cable should be accurately calculated.0 Installation Strategy For satisfying the requirement of 500 meter safety zone.section 1 was 427 m. a piece of pipe. The temporary section was called “dummy spool”. The system consisted of two anchors (DMA anchor and piggyback anchor) and an anchor wire named “DMA wire”. During installation. Installation Execution The installation of the pipeline includes following steps_ 1) Hold back DMA system installation a) Anchors (DMA anchor and piggyback anchor) deployment b) DMA wire laying OCT-DEC 2010 37 .
3 AHT#2 recovered the abandoned wire and performed socket to socket connection. kept paying out 400m DMA wire #2. AHT#2 abandoned the wire at the location.Deploy anchors at target position_and with DMA wire section 1 Once Anchor Handling Tug (AHT) #2 at the target anchor position. Figure 5 DMA wire layout to FPSO 1) HOLD BACK DMA SYSTEM INSTALLATION DMA system installation includes anchor deployment and DMA wire laying operation. sockets were pre-installed for each segment for connection. it was divided into 4 sections (total 6 segments. Pennant buoy was attached to the abandoned wire for future recovery.1.2 and #2. Total five steps are included in the operation.1. The section 3 was deployed under FPSO. Figure 4 shows the deployment of piggyback anchor and DMA anchor. AHT#2 moved forward to make tension of anchor wire and continued to precede the DMA anchor deployment.3 followed the same steps. After anchor deployment was completed_AHT#2 continued the deployment of DMA wire section 1 by 400m.com . section 2 includes 3 segments). a) Anchor Handling Tugs (AHT) used for deployment of DMA wire and pipelines which are identified as AHT #1 and AHT #2. AHT#1 inspected the DMA wire with ROV once its deployment was completed. c) Positioning tugs used for holding FPSO and keep it perpendicular to DMA wire during installation operation.2 & section 2. The laying of DMA wire #2.Laying DMA wire section 2. Then AHT#2 moved forward to make a tension to ensure the straightness of the 400m DMA wire AHT#2. section 2. Pennant buoy was attached to the abandoned wire for future recovery of AHT#1.com / www. AHT#2 picked up the 3" anchor wire attached at the anchor and paid out to 250 m and then connected the end of 3" anchor wire to 90mm chain attached to DMA anchor at AHT#2 stern. Then AHT#2 abandoned the wire at the design location.pm-pipeliner.2) Dummy pipe installation a) Dummy pipe laying outside FPSO safety zone b) Dummy pipe pulling through underneath FPSO c) Dummy pipe positioning 3) Normal pipeline laying Three types of vessel were used in installation. Step 1 .safan. During the laying procedures while the DMA wire will cross over the pipeline protection frame_operation will be slow with ROV monitoring the wire passage over the frame. b) ROV Support Vessel (RSV) used for the pre and post lay survey and monitor layback and the transfer of the DMA cable under the FPSO. b) DMA wire laying The layout of the DMA wire is presented in figure 5. There were two anchors piggybacked together-one main anchor(DMA anchor) weighted 10 tons and one piggyback anchor weighted 7 tons as shown in figure 4. a) Anchors (DMA anchor and piggyback anchor) deployment Anchor deployment adopted piggyback method to provide adequate pulling force during dummy pipe laying and pulling operations. it lowered piggyback anchor down to the seabed. Step 2 .safan. Figure 4 DMA anchors deployment 38 OCT-DEC 2010 Visit our websites at www.
3 and kept 30m distance from FPSO_AHT#2 was located on the other side of FPSO and also with 30 m distance as shown in Figure 6..Deployment of DMA wire section 3 under FPSO Once the completion of the messenger lines connection_AHT#2 attached the DMA wire section 3 to the messenger line and started to pay out while AHT#1 retrieved the messenger line accordingly. ROV always monitored the messenger lines to ensure it does not touch FPSO mooring lines/risers. There were hook and master link preinstalled at the end of messenger lines for connection. The DMA wire section 3 reached the AHT #1 as shown in Figure 8. AHT #1 started to lay down DMA wire section 3 to the seabed. and AHT #2 paid in DMA wire to keep tension on the seabed. ROV always monitored the messenger lines to ensure it does not touch FPSO mooring lines/risers. The connection of messenger lines was via ROV as shown in Figure 7. Figure 8 DMA wire connection underneath FPSO_before starting of lower down the DMA wire Step 5 Deployment of DMA wire section 4 After completed the deployment of DMA wire section 3. During the process. During the process.Laying messenger line AHT#1 recovered the end of DMA wire #2. the vessel was Figure 9 Lay down of DMA wire section 3 OCT-DEC 2010 39 . connected the DMA wire section 3 to the DMA wire section 4 and continued DMA wire section 4 laying up to target location. Step 4 . Then completed the entire 2536 meters DMA wire deployment procedures. AHT#1 moved to the other side of the FPSO and retrieved the pennant which was abandoned by AHT#2. The Messenger line were lowered down from both vessels.Figure 6 Lower messenger lines from two sides of FPSO Figure 10 AHT#2 moving away from FPSO to put the DMA wire in tension Figure 7 Messenger lines installed under FPSO Step 3 . 2) DUMMY PIPE DEPLOYMENT a) Dummy pipe laying outside FPSO safety zone The pipeline laying vessel SEMAC1 was used to lay the 1615 meters dummy pipe (see Figure 11).
SEMAC1 stopped movement.com . and SEMAC1 continued to the third pulling until the first dummy pipe section was 10 meters away from the center of the target location. To facilitate the pipeline to the target located inside the FPSO safety zone. checked the position of the flange and confirmed the alignment of the pipe.com / www. Same operation repeated. SEMAC1 pulled the dummy pipe with approximately 201 ton pulling force. DSV repositioned at the dummy pipe termination head and installed the suction anchor 20 meters away from the end. The dummy pipe laying started after the DMA wire had been connected to pipe string. The 1615 meters long dummy pipe was laid in line with DMA wire and started from its terminal point (see Figure 12). The sequence of activity was as follows: Figure 13 Panyu dummy pipe termination head 40 OCT-DEC 2010 Visit our websites at www.pm-pipeliner. SEMAC1 recovered both DMA and the DMA wire section 1. The DSV closely supported the operation by providing essential ROV monitoring and survey support to AHT s.safan. pipe laying and termination. the third pulling distance was 609 meters.safan. DSV was stationed on the suction anchor and performed survey of dummy pipe located 2536 meters away from the DMA after completion of DMA wire development. Recovered the DMA wire by using ROV and transferred it to SEMAC1. and then connected the DMA wire section 2 on board and started pulling operation. and then connected it to dummy pipe which was on SEMAC1. The pulling continues until the first 400 meters was completed. During the whole process. The section 2 of DMA wire was disconnected and section 3 was then connected to the winch and started the second 400 meters pulling. DSV monitored the progress of the pipe movement at initiation head location and other location as per SEMAC1 instruction. The dummy pipe was abandoned from SEMAC1 after it had been laid. Figure 12 Dummy pipe initiation head location c) Dummy pipe positioning Once the 1st flange of 53 m dummy spool was 10 meters away from the center of target location.b) Dummy pipe pulling through underneath FPSO Figure 11 SEMAC 1 Pipe pulling operation SEMAC1 was positioned at DMA anchor location (pipe pulling position). ROV launched from DSV to monitor the touch down point (TDP) and its initiation. During the entire pulling operation. the dummy pipe must be bottom towed (pull) through underneath the FPSO. The dummy pipe termination head should be tied to suction anchor by a hold back wire with the length precisely fit the dummy pipe final location.
Allowable Stress Design ISO 9001. The details of the operation procedures are outlined herein.Working Stress Design AISC-ASD 9th Edition American Institute of Steel Construction . 2. 7. 4.0 Specification for Welding & Inspection API RP 2A-WSD 21st Edition Recommended Practice for Planning. We have the following key findings * Protection structure system designed to avoid any damage to existing pipeline and cable is proved necessary and efficient. 3. 2000 Quality Management System PP 3) NORMAL PIPELINE LAYING Diver connected SEMAC1 abandonment and recovery (A/R) wire to the dummy pipe initiation head for pipeline recovery purpose. OCT-DEC 2010 41 . DNV 1981 Rules for Submarine Pipeline System DNV-OS-F101.0 Conclusions This paper summarized the installation methodology and successful operations of pipeline laying underneath a operating FPSO with all mooring and risers connected. 2004 Specification for Line Pipe. 10. The dummy pipe installation was completed. 2005 Submarine Pipeline Systems API SPEC 5L. and Construction of Fixed Offshore Platforms . 8. * Pipeline laying and pulling procedures adopted Dead Man Anchor and Piggy-Back Anchor locating method which simplify operation and reduce cost effectively * Segmental DMA wire and dummy pipe designed to suit small pipe-laying vessel which reduce project cost and offshore operation time * Suction anchor provided an accurate positioning bench mark. Designing. 9. there is no exciting pipeline or cable damage observed. 6. Performed recovery work and continued normal laying of the pipeline to PY 4-2.Rev. and the same normal pipeline laying was perform to PY 5-2. 5. 6.flanges movement until it reached the designated target location and the hold back wire of the suction anchor was under tension. References: 1. This project is an important example of successful experiences and a sound starting point for future improvements in pipeline pulling through oil tanker and mooring system. 2004 API 1104 20th Edition Welding of pipeline & Related Facilities ASTM E-94 Standard Guide for Radiographic Examination ASME V:2005 Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code-NDE SPC-SP-SP-0005. DMA piggy back anchor system had been removed prior to PY 5-1 recovery/laying work (Figure 13). The technologies developed and adopted in the project lead to the success of the pipeline laying.
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