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Cascade and Chinook Project:


Pipes and Bends: Material Design and Production
Paolo Novelli, Mariano Armengol, Philippe Darcis, Lorenzo Motta, Ettore Anelli/Tenaris,
Bill Fazackerley/Microalloying Int Inc, Per Kristiansen Technip, DJ Blockhus/Pegasus

Copyright 2011, Offshore Technology Conference


This paper was prepared for presentation at the Offshore Technology Conference held in Houston, Texas, USA, 25 May 2011.
This paper was selected for presentation by an OTC program committee following review of information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper have not been
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Abstract
This paper describes the flowlines and hybrid risers material selection and production for the Cascade and Chinook
Development, a ground breaking ultra deep water project that will see the first production of the new Lower Tertiary in the
Gulf of Mxico.
The subsea development is very significant, given the number of records and firsts, resulting from the deepest production
facility in the world, at the time, of 8,250 ft (2,520 m) and the deepest drill center at 8,857 ft (2,700 m) water depth.
Production from the wells in Cascade East, Cascade West and Chinook will be gathered and transported to the FPSO
(Floating Production, Storage and Offloading) via four 9 5/8 flowlines and four FSHRs (Free Standing Hybrid Risers). A fifth
FSHR connected to a 6 gas export pipeline will take unused associated gas (gas that is not consumed on the FPSO) to existing
pipeline infrastructure in Green Canyon.
The flowlines and riser systems included highly critical tubular components such as HW (Heavy Wall) pipes and bends, up
to 1.63 (41.4 mm), setting up a record in terms of metallurgical, production and dimensional requirements.
This paper will provide details on pipe and bend selection and production, providing laboratory and manufacturing data,
setting a reference point for future HPHT (High Pressure High Temperature) flowlines and risers system development in the
Lower Tertiary and in other critical deepwater developments worldwide.
Introduction
Cascade and Chinook fields are located in the Walker Ridge block, around 250 miles south of the Louisiana coastline in
ultra deepwater, at around 8,500 ft (2,590 m) of water depth. Petrobras is the operator of both fields, with Total acting as a
partner in Chinook field.
The Cascade and Chinook prospect belongs to what is defined as the Lower Tertiary Wilcox trend, a series of deep
reservoirs discovered starting from 2001 in turbitide deposits ([1] Meyer et al., 2005). Besides the Cascade and Chinook fields,
Lower Tertiary discoveries include Perdido folt belt, Great White, Jack and St. Malo prospect and the recent ultra deep
discovery, Tiber.

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The trend has an estimated discovery volume of 2.8 billion barrels of producible hydrocarbon, which represents about a
15% addition to total Gulf of Mxico (GOM) oil and gas volumes. Developing a field in such a complex and promising
scenario requires the need to overcome significant technical challenges such as complex subsalt imaging issues, drilling rig
limitations, HPHT, reservoir porosity and permeability anisotropy ([2] MMS, 2008).
During the planning of Cascade and Chinook, the only log data available on similar reservoirs were recorded from
WR758#1 (Jack prospect). Considering the reduced amount of information, the Petrobras strategy was based on a Staged
development, aiming to gather as much information as possible on the reservoir capability during a first phase (see Fig. 1), and
subsequently optimize production and field design of the other phases ([3] Ribeiro et al., 2008).
The defined approach led to a number of new
technologies for the GOM, of which the most important
are reported below ([2] MMS, 2008):
Floating Production, Storage and Offloading,
FPSO, in GOM. The FPSO will be a turret buoy
vessel, disconnectable from the buoy.
Crude transportation via shuttle tanker.
The use of Free Standing Hybrid Risers
(FSHRs) to transport the fluids from the seabed
to the FPSO.
The use of subsea boosting pumps at the seabed
to increase production.
Polyester mooring system.
Cascade and Chinook Phase 1 sets additional records
such as the FPSO being operated in deepest water depth
worldwide, the deepest pipe-in-pipe (PiP) flowline
system installed, the first FSHR installed by reeling and
the deepest wet insulated production flowline.

Fig.1 Cascade and Chinook Phase I

In this demanding scenario, material requirements becomes extremely challenging requiring heavy wall (HW), high
strength steel and corrosion resistant tubular products. Furthermore, complex flow assurance requirements gave the rise to the
need of insulation system in an ultra deepwater scenario, adding stringent coating requirements to the tubular production
package.
The scope of work for Cascade and Chinook project that was awarded to Tenaris included production of seamless pipes ad
hot induction bends in steel grade up to X70 ranging from 6 5/8 OD to 14 OD. In particular the following items were
delivered:

Chinook Field Pipe-in-Pipe Dual Flowlines


o Outer Pipe in steel grade X70 including 3LPP (Polypropylene) anticorrosive coating.
o Inner Pipe steel grade X70.
Cascade Field Flowlines
o Production flowlines in steel grade X70 and WT up to 33.5 mm with 5LSyntPP (Syntactic Polypropylene) Wet
insulation coating.
o Production Flowlines Jumpers in steel grade X70 with 5LSyntPP Wet insulation coating.
o Solid Jumpers, PLET (Pipeline End Termination) and PLEM (Pipeline End Manifolds).
o Hot Induction Bends in Steel Grade X70 with Solid PU (Polyurethane) insulation coating.
Gas Export Flowlines
o Gas Export Flowlines in steel grade X65 with FBE (Fusion Bonded Epoxy) anticorrosive coating.
o Gas Export Jumpers bends in steel grade X65 with FBE anticorrosive coating.
Free Standing Hybrid Risers
o Gas Export Riser in steel grade X65 with 5LSyntPP Wet insulation coating.
o Gas Export Top Riser Assembly and Spools bends in steel grade X65.
o Production Riser in steel grade X70 and WT up to 33 mm, with 5LSyntPP Wet insulation coating.
o Upper part of Production Riser in steel grade X70 and WT up to 42 mm, with 5LSyntPP Wet insulation coating.
o Production Riser, Top Riser Assembly bends in steel grade X70 and X65 and bend angles up to 162.5 degrees.
Subsea Manifolds
o Pipes for Manifolds in steel grade X70 and WT up to 29 mm.

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Tenaris experience and know-how in seamless pipes production was challenged by the demanding requirements in terms of
mechanical properties combined with HW and chemical composition limitations due to field construction concerns.
Furthermore, dimensional properties of pipe ends required a careful characterization through manual and automated
measurements systems and, for specific items, additional measuring services were provided to facilitate girth welding and
AUT calibration block purchase.
Insulation needed to be carefully designed and applied considering the high temperature and also the hydrostatic pressure
given by the field water depth, setting a record for Cascade and Chinook as the deepest Wet Insulated Pipeline.
Hot Induction Bend production included wall thicknesses up to 42 mm, which combined with chemical limitations and
bend angles required (up to 162.5 degrees) put bend production for Cascade and Chinook beyond the limits of the actual
standard industrial capability for single bend construction without a girth welded splice.
Seamless Pipes Production
Metallurgical Challenges - Background
The required strength (e.g. X65) of seamless HW pipes could be achieved by increasing the content of microalloying
elements such as vanadium but precipitation hardening can lead to toughness values below the required level. Therefore, new
solutions, which are outside the conventional thinking for (micro)-alloying additions were identified for high performance X65
X70 Q&T (Quenched & Tempered) seamless pipes with wall thickness greater than 35 mm.
The metallurgical design of these products has required a systematic approach, including both fundamental studies and
industrial trials. This work has led to an important number of individual findings which called for complex metallurgical and
metallographic evaluations ([4] Anelli et al., 2004), ([5] Tivelli et al., 2005), ([6] Gonzalez et al., 2004).
Main findings are summarized below.
The as-quenched microstructure plays a primary role in determining final strength and toughness. In order to attain the
required yield strength level, using relatively high tempering temperatures, it is a pre-requisite to maintain the fraction
of polygonal ferrite well below 30%. The best toughness values are related to a predominantly bainitic microstructure
after quenching combined with a homogeneous and fine distribution of islands of high carbon martensite with retained
austenite (MA constituent). This is promoted through the control of austenite grain size (< 20 m) during the heating
stage and an effective quenching mechanism.
The tempering temperature has a secondary role. However, higher tempering temperature leads to a slightly improved
toughness, especially in the case of coarse MA islands.
The laboratory results gave the pattern of strength/toughness properties as a function of (micro) alloy design for a base
composition and given quenching and tempering conditions (Fig. 2):
o The reduction of Carbon content from 0.09 wt% to 0.06 wt% did not give substantial improvements in toughness
although strength is slightly decreased.
o The increase of Carbon content up to 0.13 wt%
gives strengthening (+60 MPa), but is
detrimental to toughness and weldability.
o The addition of Molybdenum and Nickel (MoNi-Nb-V) gives an excellent strength/toughness
combination, together with good field
weldability. This design also provides Yield
Strength, YS, well above grade X65 combined
with a 50% FATT (Fracture Appearance
Transition Temperature) as low as minus 85C.
The alloy design gives a Carbon Equivalent, CE
IIW, of 0.38% and a PCM of 0.20 % max.
o The Vanadium-free version (Mo-Ni-Nb) does
reduce the FATT temperature, but at expense of
strength (reduction of 35 MPa).
o Addition of 0.22 Cromium produces further
improvement in toughness (50% FATT below Fig.2 - Charpy Toughness (expressed in 50% of FATT) vs yield
100C) at expense of field weldability (CEIIW =
strength for various laboratory Q&T steels
0.42%).
o The alloy design based on the Mo-Ni-Cr-Nb-V
version exhibits the best results in terms of low values of Yield to Tensile, Y/T, ratio.

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The Q&T pipes, produced using the Mo-Ni-Cr-Nb-V steel, have significantly improved toughness for a given yield
strength level between 460 and 530 MPa, compared to the conventional chemistries without the addition of Nickel. The
production showed that suitable mechanical properties at room and high temperature (up to 130C), hardness values lower
than 248 HV10 (Vickers Hardness of 10 kg), and good toughness levels (i.e. 50% FATT < -50C) are achieved. Also high
CTOD values at -10C (> 1.1 mm) were obtained.
The very good results were attributed to the selected chemical composition, strict control of process parameters during heat
treatment, and effective external and internal quenching in a water tank with rotating pipe and an inner nozzle.
Laboratory data and experience, gathered during past production for offshore projects, drove the decision of following the
same metallurgical route in defining the Cascade and Chinook flowline and riser materials.
In the next paragraph mechanical results related to the production of the most challenging Item (OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm,
and X70 grade) will be reported.
Mechanical Results Item OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X70 grade, Upper Section of Production FSH Riser
In general, pipeline and riser design starts from the selection of the material and the definition of the pipe diameter, to
guarantee fundamental flow assurance requirements. Pipe wall thickness is then selected by considering limit state design and
ad hoc safety factors as per, for example, API ([7] API RP 1111) and DNV ([8] DNV-OS-F101). The combined considerations of
these limit state functions lead to an increasing complexity of the most critical items of a project. For the Cascade and Chinook
project, the upper section of the FSHR system, produced in dimensions of OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X70 steel grade, is a good
example of such a challenging item with complex requirements.
In order to guarantee optimum behavior after welding, limitations of the material chemical composition were agreed. In
particular, Carbon Equivalent (CEIIW) for all the produced heats needed to be kept in the 0.37-0.39 range. Furthermore, in
order to provide girth weld metal overmatching, the variation range of tensile properties needed to be properly controlled
providing limitation on maximum values above the minimum specified tensile requirements (e.g. 120 MPa above the
minimum specific yielding strength, for X65 and X70 grades) and a maximum variation range (e.g. range of 100 MPa for the
specific yielding strength, for X65 and X70 grades).
Figure 3 reports the distributions of tensile properties (Yield Strength/YS, and Ultimate Tensile Strength/UTS) determined
during the production of Cascade and Chinook production riser material. Reported data were carried out according to API
Specification 5L/ISO 3183 ([9] API Specification 5L/ISO
3183), using half inch round specimens. Test frequency
20%
was two longitudinal and two transverse tests for each
18%
heat, sampling two, alternating, pipe ends.
16%
14%
Samples

Analyzing the distribution of YS and UTS, it can be


noted that the material properties fell well within the
required limitations of this project, highlighting a good
industrial control of chemical composition and heat
treatment parameters.

12%
10%
8%
6%

Pipe material, directly in contact with production


fluids, could be affected by different forms of corrosion
due to the presence of impurities like CO2 and/or H2S.
For this reason, flowlines and risers produced in seamless
mills need to comply with specific requirements, defined
in standards and specifications.

4%
2%
0%

448

483

517

586

621

655

689

YS & UTS (M Pa)


YS (M Pa)

In the Cascade and Chinook project, the FSHR


material has been selected to withstand sour
environments. Maximum hardness was required lower
than 248 HV10 and Hydrogen Induced Cracking, HIC,
and Sulphide Stress Cracking, SSC, testing was required.

552

UTS (M Pa)

Fig. 3 YS&UTS distribution for OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X70 grade

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Vickers Hardness HV10 measurements on 4 quadrants were performed for each mill heat. Hardness indentations were taken
at 1.5 mm from the outer and inner surface and at midwall, as per API Specification 5L/ISO 3183 ([9] API Specification 5L/ISO
3183).
Figure 4 reports the distribution of all hardness
indentations taken during Cascade and Chinook
production, at midwall and close to the outer and inner
pipe surfaces. The data show the homogeneity of internal
and external quenching process, by the similarity of the
hardness distributions taken 1.5 mm from the inner and
outer surfaces.

5%

Samples

4%
3%
2%

HIC resistance was further tested in accordance to


NACE TM0284 ([10] NACE TM0284), for 96 hours in
Solution A. All HIC samples showed Crack Sensivity
Ratio, CLR, Crack Thickness Ratio, CTR, and Crack
Length Ratio, CSR, equal to 0.

1%
0%
190

215

240

SSC resistance was also evaluated in accordance to


EFC 16 ([11] EFC 16), for 720 hours in Solution B at 90%
AYS (Actual Yielding Strength). All SSC samples were
inspected after 720 hours with 10X magnification
without any cracks detected on the whole production.

Hardness (HV10)

Internal

Mid Wall

External

Fig. 4 Hardness distribution for OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X70 grade

Material toughness was also evaluated during the production using transverse CVN (Charpy V Notch) specimens, tested
according to ASTM A370 ([12] ASTM A370) at a temperature of -26C at a frequency of two sets per heat. On a total of 72 sets
of Charpy V-Notch characterizations (three specimens for each set), all the results exhibited Shear Area above 90%.
ASTM 1290-02 ([13] ASTM 1290-02), Crack Tip Opening Displacement, CTOD, testing was carried out at -4C on 1 set of
3 specimens per heat. On a total of 36 specimens all results provided CTOD values better than 0.7 mm showing all m fracture
face type.
Further proof of the excellent toughness of the material was given by a CVN transition temperature curve, performed
during First Day Production Test (FDPT). The results reported in Fig. 5 show a FATT, based on 50% Shear Area, lower than 60C.

500

120

Energy (J)

80
300
60
200
40
100

20

0
-90

-80

-70

-60

-50

-40

-30

-20

-10

Temperature (C)
Energy (J)

Shear Area (%)

Fig. 5 Charpy transition temperature curve for FSHR, OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X70 grade

10

20

Shear Area (%)

100

400

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Dimensional Challenges-Flowlines and Risers Pipes Ends Conditioning and Measurements


Fatigue has become an increasingly significant design consideration in deepwater floating production systems and in the
design of flowlines and risers. In ultra deep water scenarios, such as Cascade and Chinook, fatigue loads need to be carefully
considered and evaluated. In particular, welds could represent a critical initiation zone due to the potential presence of stress
raisers caused by welding overfill profiles and mismatch between abutting pipe ends, or due to the potential presence of
welding imperfections ([14] Darcis et al., 2009), ([15] Darcis et al., 2009).
From the pipe production point of view, optimum tolerances on the pipe ends allow minimizing Hi-Lo misalignment and
improving AUT (Automated Ultrasonic Testing) control, by guaranteeing minimum variation of WT with respect to the WT
AUT calibration blocks.
In order to provide optimum geometrical variation on pipe ends, Tenaris has developed special pipe end conditioning
process such as Cold End Sizing and End Machining. Furthermore, to completely characterize the pipe end geometrical
properties of flowlines and riser products, a Laser Ends Measuring System (LEMS), capable of fully inspecting the pipe ends
(more than 1000 measurements per pipe end), has been developed.
LEMS data provides statistical information that can be also used as an input for fit-for-purpose Tenaris developed software
TenfitTM, which provides the following services, through further analyses:

Best Matching application creates the perfect column, identifying the best pipe assembly sequence, or provides for
every weld, the optimum welding angle between pipe ends which guarantee the minimum Hi-Lo value.

Counter Boring application provides guidance for ID boring, determining optimum machining ID and WT
distribution forecast, after boring.

In Cascade and Chinook project, in case of restricted ID tolerances, the Cold End Sizing process was performed in order to
improve the hot rolled geometry of pipes ends on the last 150 mm. The accuracy and repeatability of this process has been
evaluated by the LEMS.
For the risers, since Technip performed ID boring operations on site, the dimensional data measured by the LEMS were
used to select the optimum ID boring, using the Counter-Boring application of TenfitTM software.
Several simulations of internal machining, in
conjunction with external centering of the counter-bore
machining tool, were performed for each of the three
riser dimensions, in order to define accurately the
counter-bore parameters considering: the forecast
residual WT after machining, the removed material and
the eventual presence/number/depth/extent of black
spots (areas not machined, with traces of original pipe
surface).
The outputs of the TenfitTM software included a
forecast of WT distribution after machining as reported
in Fig. 6.
This data was used to produce, select and purchase
the AUT calibration blocks prior to machining.

35
30
25
20
%

15
10
5
0
30.23

30.73

31.24

31.75
WT (mm)
WT min

32.26

32.77

33.27

WT max

Fig. 6 Forecasted Wall Thickness Distribution after Counter-Bore


TM
machining, using Tenfit software.

Once on site, machining was performed and


Technip provided WT feedback measurements to Tenaris. The measured data was then compared to the TenfitTM software
forecast showing a good correspondence (less than 0.3 mm difference), demonstrating the effectiveness of the laser
measurements and of the additional Counter-Bore analysis performed.

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Wet Insulation System


5LsyntPP Main Features
For HPHT developments one of the outstanding challenges is related to guaranteed flow assurance through the pipelines,
avoiding formation of hydrates or waxes and guaranteeing a reasonable cool down time to the system in case of shut down.
In case of long subsea tie backs, flow assurance requirements become even more challenging leading to insulation systems
which must guarantee extremely low OHTC (Overall Heat Transfer Coefficient). The ultra deep water environment further
increase the criticalities, leading to the need of a system resistant to potential risks of cracking, disbondment, collapse or wet
ageing.
For the Cascade and Chinook project (while for the
longer subsea tieback of the Chinook field a PiP solution
was selected) the dual production flowlines of the Cascade
field called for a suitable Wet Insulation system. The MultiLayer syntactic polypropylene insulation system was then
selected in order to comply with the insulation and
functional requirements, see Fig. 7.
The insulation material used in the project was based on
the Syntactic Polypropylene (SyntPP) technology. Such
material compound is a combination of Socotherms proper
formulated polypropylene, PP, matrix which incorporates
on-line, i.e. during the extrusion process itself, hollow glass
microspheres, HGM ([16] U. Okonkwo et al., 2005) ([17] M.
Thome et al. 2004).

The HGM technology has fostered development of


flowline insulation alternatives that reduce thermal
conductivity of the composite and make deepwater
hydrocarbon recovery feasible. The glass bubbles are made
of soda-lime borosilicate glass with a high strength to
density ratio.

Fig. 7 Socotherms multi-Layer syntactic polypropylene


insulation system

Extra high strength glass bubbles were used on the Cascade Project. The average density was 0.38 g/cc (0.0137 lb/in3). The
hydrostatic crush strength of this glass bubbles is rated to 380 bar (5,500 psi) with a minimum of 90% of survival. They are
chemically inert and high temperature resistant (600C - 1,110F).
The wet insulation system was applied by the Multy-Pass technology which consists basically in the lateral extrusion
process. Such processing offers the possibility of combining variable thicknesses of different materials following the specific
requirements of the project.
Cascade and Chinook 5LsyntPP Qualification Trials
For the Cascade and Chinook project, an extensive and challenging qualification program was specified by Petrobras in
order to validate the insulation system design for such extreme conditions. Simultaneously, the intention of such a program
was to anticipate potential risks of cracking, disbondment, collapse or wet ageing of the insulation material and system.
Qualification program extended through 6 months and included the following tests:

Full Scale Reeling Test on 5LSyntPP:


o Reeling trials with 6 pipes containing full insulation system and different types of Injection Molded
Polypropylene Field Joint Coatings.
o Post test evaluation performed, i.e. comparison to base line anticorrosion performance.
o No cracking or failure in any of 6 tests.

Full Scale Simulated Service Test on 5LSyntPP:


o Samples were taken from the reeling trial above.
o Test in project condition for a minimum of 28 days.
o Thermal performance was validated.
o No mechanical damage. No collapse of HGM. Mechanical stability confirmed.

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o
o
o

Almost negligible creep (< 0.2mm).


No signs of degradation or wet aging.
Post test evaluation performed, i.e. comparison to base line anticorrosion performance

Hydrostatic Testing of Insulation Material (SyntPP):


o Hydrostatic testing of insulation material at 260 bar (3,800 psi).
o Negligible water absorption (0.15% by volume).
o Negligible creep (1.34%).

Hot Induction Bend Production


Metallurgical Challenges - Background
Linepipe projects always involve a number of accessories, among these induction bends exhibit a high level of complexity.
Since straight pipes and hot bends are laid together to constitute an entire line, the whole-chain-reliability demands the same
level of requirements for both products. This is the main reason why the design, production and supply of hot induction bends
have become a key factor in a linepipe project, from its feasibility analysis to the in-field operations.
The Cascade and Chinook FSHR system required bends to be used in the Lower Riser Assembly and in the Top Riser
Assembly, constituting a critical requirement for Hot Induction Bend production in terms of HW mechanical characteristics
required and very high bend angles.
Bends are produced in general by hot induction bending (HIB) ([18] Mannucci et al., 2009) ([19] Mannucci et al.,2010). The
HIB is a hot deformation process which concentrates in a narrow zone (hot tape), defined by the distance between the
induction coil (heating ring) and the quenching ring, both placed concentrically with respect to the processing (mother) pipe
(Fig. 8). The pipe is pushed from behind, whilst the front is clamped to an arm constrained to describe a circular path. This
provokes a bending moment on the entire structure, but steel is plastically deformed only in correspondence with the hot tape.
The quenching ring plays therefore two simultaneous roles: to quench the fabricating bend and to define the zone under plastic
deformation.

Fig. 8 Hot Induction Bending (HIB) process.

HIB process involves high plastic deformations taking place at temperatures falling into the austenitic temperature range,
which therefore has a significant influence on the local microstructure and the final properties.
As-bent products are always heat treated and, depending on the Post Bending Heat Treatment (PBHT), two different
fabricating routes can be considered:
Traditional: A Stress Relieving (e.g. 550C for 45 mins + air cooling) following the bending process.
Quenching-Tank: An off-line full quenching (e.g. 920C for 30 mins followed by full immersion into a quenching
tank) and subsequent tempering (e.g. 650C for 60 mins followed by air cooling) after the bending process.

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As for any kind of Q&T product, the yield strength is principally driven by the efficiency of the quenching system, which
is given by the in-line quenching ring (TR) or by the off-line full quenching system (QT), item 2 above.
Tenaris has extensively researched during the past few years in an attempt to consolidate the use of the QT route. Through
intensive research activities and industrial characterization programs aimed at outlining the different microstructure and final
properties achievable by the two methods, the QT route has been shown to provide the optimum results for HW bends.
Notwithstanding a comprehensible market inertia, it has been largely accepted by all players involved in challenging
projects that the TR can be proposed only for bends which are not going to face hard conditions in the field, (e.g. X52 grade or
lower, Charpy tests required at 0C or higher, no corrosion tests required, etc.), whilst the QT method becomes the most
reliable option when any stringent condition is required or X60-X80 and higher steel grades are involved.
Based on the above described scenario, the fabrication of hot induction bends by HW mother pipes needs to be performed
exclusively by the QT route.
Metallurgical investigations and in-lab characterizations were focused not only on the final product but also, and mainly,
on the intermediate stages during the whole fabrication process. In-lab simulations of the industrial thermomechanical cycle
were carried out on samples of mother pipes to investigate the influence of hot induction bending parameters on the local
microstructure (different portions of a given bend undergo different thermomechanical cycles during bending) of as-bent
products, since this microstructure is the starting point when as-bent products undergo the off-line Q&T.
In-lab thermal simulations on as-bent products were then carried out in order to investigate the evolution of microstructure
with regard to different quenching cycles. Particular attention was devoted to outline the austenitic grain growth versus
different heating rates, soaking temperatures and holding times, since the size of the prior austenite grain has a strong impact
on both the hardenability and the low-temperature toughness behavior.
Samples of as-quenched bends were also utilized to build-up the so-called tempering curves (i.e. in-lab tempering
treatments followed by tensile/Charpy/hardness testing). This is useful to set up the optimum conditions (heating rate, soaking
temperature and holding time, as for the quenching treatment) for the industrial tempering.
As a result, hot induction bends with up to 48mm WT in X65 steel grade and up to 42 mm WT in steel grade X65 were
successfully produced. The complete characterization program included hardness indentations (< 248 HV10), Charpy V-notch
(CVN) and CTOD testing at different temperatures (FATT < -60C for CVN tests and CTOD values higher than 0.5 mm at 60C and corrosion tests (HIC and SSC: FPBT and method A). In all cases the testing gave successful results.
Mechanical Results - Cascade and Chinook Gooseneck Bends, OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, 3D, 162.5 degree, X65 grade
The Cascade and Chinook scope of work included what can be considered as one of the most challenging items ever
produced through the Hot Induction Bending process.
The Top Riser Assembly, which aims to connect the flexible Jumper with the rigid part of the FSHR system and with
tethered chain connected to the buoy chain ([20] Roveri et al., 2008), includes a gooseneck system in which a bend of 162.5 was
required. The required dimensions of the finished bend were based on OD 257 mm, WT 42 mm, X65 material.

Gooseneck Bends 257x42, X65 3D, 162,5


162,5
530 MPa and 530 MPa
L (12.7) & T (8.9)
508 and 518 MPa
L (12.7) & T (8.9

T.Z.

Bend
Body

start

530 and 530 MPa


L (12.7) & T (8.9

532 and 520 MPa


L (12.7) & T (8.9)

T.Z.
end

T.L.

T.L.

513 and 520 MPa


514 and 524 MPa
L (12.7) & T (8.9 L (12.7) & T (8.9)

509 and 519 MPa


L (12.7) & T (8.9)

EXTRADOS

INTRADOS

Fig. 9 Summarizing chart of average tensile properties


achieved in the different HIB locations

The increase in the angle of the bend made the


effectiveness of the internal surface cooling during
quenching even more critical. The mechanical
properties were checked on bending qualification tests
and on Lot Test bends, characterizing, with care, the
behavior of the produced material in the different zone
within the bend itself.
In Fig. 9, a chart summarizing the average tensile
properties achieved in the different HIB locations is
reported. It can be noted that the YS and UTS level
exceeded the requirements reaching steel grade X70
properties.
Furthermore it can be highlighted that produced
gooseneck bends showed excellent toughness
properties at -26C and low hardness levels with all
results below the agreed acceptance criteria of 248
HV10 maximum.

10

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Concluding Remarks
The Petrobras Cascade and Chinook fields located in the Walker Ridge block, around 250 miles south of the Louisiana
coastline in ultra deepwater, at around 8,500 ft (2,590 m) of water depth, represents one of the most challenging offshore
projects worldwide, setting many firsts in terms of new technologies applied to an extreme environment such as the Gulf of
Mexico.
In such a challenging environment, material reliability becomes the first concern for Oil&Gas operators and, consequently,
the production of pipes and bends are critical with regard to the project complexity both from the dimensional and
metallurgical point of view. Furthermore, in order to guarantee flow assurance, demanding requirements in terms of insulation
coating were added to the scope of work. The following main conclusion can be highlighted:

Heavy Wall seamless pipes were produced in grades X65 and X70 up to 42 mm, according to API 5L 44th edition
and very stringent additional project requirements. The chemical composition was based on previous Tenaris
Reseach and Development findings on HW and industrial experience. Mechanical properties showed a limited
variation of YS and UTS (e.g. YS variation range below 100 MPa) and hardness values below 248 HV10. CTOD
testing at -4C gave positive results (all data >0.7 mm) and Charpy V notch tests showed optimum behavior at 26C. Furthermore, Charpy transition curves showed a FATT lower then -60C.

Stringent dimensional properties were required to comply with the project welding and fatigue requirements.
Restricted ID tolerances were achieved through Cold End Sizing and controlled with automated Laser Ends
Measuring System. In order to facilitate end machining on riser pipe ends, LEMS data was analyzed through a
dedicated software package providing guidance for ID boring operations and AUT calibration block selection.

Production flowlines and FSHRs required a Wet Insulation System capable of withstanding hydrostatic pressure
given by 8,250 ft (2,520 m) of water depth and had to provide a suitable OHTC. Socotherms 5LSynPP was
selected and successfully qualified during Reeling Trials, Hydrostatic Test and Simulated Service Tests.

Hot Induction Bends for complex Subsea Systems and for Top and Bottom Riser Assembly were produced.
Through a full Q&T solution, after Hot Induction Bending homogeneous properties were achieved in the different
bend zones in X65 and X70 steel grades, keeping a low hardness level (below 250 HV10) yet maintaining the
required tensile and toughness properties required.

Acknowledgements
The authors would like to express their gratitude towards Petrobras and Technip which gave permission to the publication
of this paper.
The authors would also like to acknowledge SocothermAmericas for the support during the Cascade&Chinook project
production and during the paper preparation.
The authors deeply thanks Simas S.P.A for the collaboration provided during the Hot Induction Bending production for
Cascade and Chinook project.

OTC 21832

11

Nomenclature
3LPP
5LSyntPP
AUT
CE IIW
CE PCM
CLR
CSR
CTOD
CTR
DWT
FATT
FPBT
FPSO
FSHR
GOM
HGM
HIB
HIC
Hi-Lo
HPHT
HV10
HW
ID
LEMS
MA
OHTC
PBHT
PiP
PU
Q&T
SCR
SSC
SST
UTS
WD
WT
YS

3 layer polypropylene
5 layer syntactic polypropylene
Automatic Ultrasonic Testing
Carbon Equivalent (International Institute of Welding)
Carbon Equivalent (Ito-Bessyo formula).
Crack Length Ratio
Crack Sensitivity Ratio
Crack Tip Opening Displacement
Crack Thickness Ratio
Drop Weight Tear Test
Fracture Arrestance Transition Temperature
Free Point Bending Test
Floating Production Storage and Offloading
Free Standing Hybrid Riser
Gulf of Mexico
Hollow Glass Microsphere
Hot Induction Bending
Hydrogen Induced Cracking
Mismatch between pipe ends
High Pressure/High Temperature
Hardness Vickers
Heavy Wall
Internal Diameter
Laser End Measurement System
Martensite Austenite
Overall Heat Transfer Coefficient
Post Bending Heat Treatment
Pipe in Pipe
Polyurethane
Quenching and Tempering
Steel Catenary Riser
Sulfide Stress Cracking
Simulated Service Test
Ultimate Tensile Strength
Water Depth
Wall thickness
Yield Strength

12

OTC 21832

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