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Decade-long Modular Power excellence for Offshore ESP production

Client: Global Oilfield services provider

Location: Thailand

Sectors: Oil and Gas

The Challenge

Declining platform power engines threatened production potential in anticipation of burgeoning oil prices

Our customer, one of the world’s leading oil field services provider was contracted by a leading international oil company (IOC) customer for maintenance and production in one of their offshore blocks in Thailand.

Back in 2009, the O&G IOC team observed a stark decline in performance for its numerous platforms’ hull diesel engines, which were more than 30 years old. Aging diesel engines meant diminishing returns in the form of less efficient power which ultimately impacted their production rate. Man-hours and associated maintenance costs for the upkeep of the hull engines were adding and it was becoming increasingly uneconomical.

Furthermore, the platforms’ electric submersible pumps (ESP) will be pivotal in extending the life of their platforms in the coming years as it was anticipated that the wells will have insufficient energy to naturally produce at economic rates. Power is the bloodline of this core rig system and the entire platform.

With the absence of a reliable power source, production and revenue potential are at risk and unable to realise their full potential. How can the stakeholders get the power equation right in anticipation of the most crucial production lifecycle in the years to come?

Project fact file

Of uninterrupted power 12years
Of flexible modular power 35MW
Platforms 11 Offshore
Power Generators 5 ADDGAS
Power generators 25 Diesel

The Solution

Engineered flexible modular power solution that maximised ESPs’ potential while harnessing Flare gas through production life cycle

Our customer was tasked to resolve the issue for their client and partnered with Aggreko to devise a solution that would meet their multi-dimensional operational pain-points. With costs and power efficiency being the core success factors for the eventual proposed power solution, a holistic approach with detailed technical evaluation and sizing was taken to assess the platforms’ existing power and fuel infrastructure for solution design.

Winning solutions features

Aggreko’s solution was favoured with our comprehensive technical evaluation, turnkey engineering expertise and unmatched uptime reliability. The eventual solution proposed and delivered after rounds of rigorous advisory, discussions and technical computation were as follows:

  • Zero CAPEX modular power solution that serves as primary power source for accommodation, rig systems and ESPs. It replaced all 11 platforms’ legacy diesel engines, with 100% uptime and unrivalled fuel efficiency, powered by a mix of diesel and gas fuel sources, complying with the highest offshore safety standards.
  • Aggreko’s engineers discovered gas being flared could potentially be used for power generation, something the customer team wasn’t even aware was possible, as they had the perception it wouldn’t have been operationally feasible. We deployed an “Add-gas” solution with 5 dual-fuel generators that would utilize diesel and flare gas on one production platform. The flare gas composition was between 10-15%, which helped reduce diesel usage and associated costs. With inconsistent flare gas production, the beauty of this solution was that the “Add-Gas” generator units were able to switch automatically to cope with the fluctuating volume and blend seamlessly with diesel, with no compromise on the quality of the power output.
  • Designed and engineered the pressure regulation system as part of the gas train modification to meet offshore specifications.
  • Deployed up to 30 units of power generators running between 50-60% load, 24/7 for the rest of the 10 offshore platforms throughout entire project tenure.
  • Synchronised power supply running independently for most platforms and also running remotely on satellite unmanned platforms.
  • Stacked generators for footprint maximisation amid space constraint.
Solution Benefits

The economic and operational benefits were evaluated to be superior:

  • Flexible commercial model where the stakeholders benefit from the operation of a brand new highly efficient power generation equipment at ZERO-capex, with no immediate cost pressure due to non-requirement of upfront investment.
  • Optimised cost solution and reduced carbon emissions by harnessing platform’s otherwise wasted flare gas which replaced their diesel usage for power generation.
  • Ability to flex power supply according to the platform’s operations’ lifecycle where modular power units can be reduced to optimise costs along the way. On the other hand, the IOC was able to ramp up its power requirements to produce from 11 platforms, capitalised on uplift in oil prices during the decade long project tenure. This proved to be a more efficient cost set-up as opposed to its legacy diesel engines where deterioration was expected to accelerate, along with the maintenance costs involved. The IOC was able to scale down its power capacity during the later years of the project tenure, aligning with well productivity and normalisation of oil prices.
  • The ripple effects of reliable power ensured their ESPs remained well protected as frequent power shutdowns could undermine the system over time.

The Impact

Revenue maximisation through the most critical lifecycle stage with reliable and energy efficient power set-up

The initial contract duration was for five years but flexibility incorporated into the commercial model allowed both stakeholders to assess the capacity of power required through the platforms’ production lifecycle.

The cost and performance of the solution proved to be so economically outstanding that customer extended the contract multiple times leading to a total project tenure of 12 years to date. The uninterruptible reliable primary source of power delivered confidence and peace of mind for all stakeholders, knowing that production wouldn’t be disrupted due to lapse in power quality or supply.

The project delivered a multitude of energy and cost savings while considerably reducing their emissions.