PetroSA Commences laying of pipeline from F-O Development Field for Project Ikhwezi
Mossel Bay, Western Cape
Project Ikhwezi, PetroSA’s flagship initiative to sustain the Mossel Bay Gas-To-Liquids (GTL) Refinery, is making significant progress, with the company commencing the installation of a 40km pipeline between the F-O drilling field and its FA production platform.
The 40km pipeline will transport natural gas from the F-O development field when the project is commissioned. Commissioning is expected to take place during the second half of next year.
PetroSA has commissioned a giant vessel, the Allseas Audacia, to perform the task of installing the pipeline. On arrival at the offshore development location, the Allseas Audacia vessel will weld the 12” pipe sections together, before these are lowered onto the sea bed. Integrity inspections of the pipeline will also be performed on the vessel.
During good weather conditions the vessel can assemble and lay about 2km of pipeline per day. The Allseas Audacia is manned by a 270-strong technical crew which lives permanently on board the vessel during the installation phase.
Project Ikhwezi is aimed at sustaining the life of the Mossel Bay GTL Refinery. The wells are based off the F-O field, which is located 40km south-east of the offshore F-A production platform. The PetroSA Board of Directors took a Final Investment Decision for the company to embark on the project in April 2011.
Production of the gas from the first well is planned for the second half of 2013. Further development of other gas prospects near the F-O field could potentially assist with sustaining the life of the GTL Refinery.
Ms Nosizwe Nokwe-Macamo, the PetroSA Group CEO, said the laying of the pipeline represented a significant milestone in the project.
“PetroSA is poised for significant growth over the next couple of months and years. It is critical that this growth is under-pinned by sustaining the Mossel Bay GTL Refinery,” Ms Nokwe-Macamo said.
“We are satisfied with the progress made so far and we expect that production from Project Ikhwezi and other fields will sustain commercial operations at the GTL Refinery until the 2019/20 financial year,” she added.
The laying of the pipeline follows other important milestones that have been achieved so far in the project. These include the approval by the National Energy Regulator of South Africa of a PetroSA application for gas production. The approval allows the National Oil Company to produce natural gas from the F-O development fields when the project is commissioned.
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