An oil field in the North Sea will be dismantled

Isbel Lázaro.
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campo petrolífero

Inspenet, November 4, 2023.

The Fulmar oil field, located in the North Vein and operated by Repsol Sinopec, recorded production exceeding 130,000 metric barrels of oil throughout its operational life until its production ceased in October 2018, following the approval of the North Sea Transition Authority. The dismantling task will be carried out by the oil services company Archer .

Plugging and abandonment (P&A) work is anticipated to begin in late 2024 or early 2025 .

Its infrastructure is made up of two jacket-like structures connected by bridges, which house facilities related to drilling, production and accommodation. Fulmar A, which is the main production platform, is mounted on a large steel structure with eight legs and has 36 wells.

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For its part, the Fulmar AD platform, dedicated to the wellhead, has six wells. Platform A has an approximate weight of 12,400 tons, while platform AD, with a fixed structure with four steel legs, weighs around 1,406 tons.

Decommissioning of the Fulmar oil field

The decommissioning process will encompass removal of jackets, ground disassembly, recycling and disposal of upper structures and related substructures. This is a fully integrated P&A project incorporating a modular P&A platform along with well services and technology.

Likewise, activities will include the dismantling of surface facilities, including the main Fulmar A production platform, the bridge that connects to Fulmar and the Fulmar AD wellhead platform. Importantly, the sacrificial anodes that play a role in protecting the jackets will remain in place.

It is also relevant to mention that the Fulmar platform will continue to operate as an export center until the fields stop producing or are disconnected. During this transition period, it is planned to carry out the plugging and abandonment of the wells with the objective of minimizing the costs related to the maintenance of the infrastructure.

Once all wells on the platform have been plugged and abandoned and the platform ceases to function as an export hub, the upper parts will undergo comprehensive dismantling. These surfaces will be transported ashore for disassembly and cleaning of reusable equipment, with recycling and disposal of equipment that cannot be reused.

For its part, the dismantling of the underwater infrastructure will be carried out later, after the upper surfaces have been removed. Additionally, an evaluation of the pipes and umbilicals will be conducted to determine if they need to be removed or will remain in place.

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