OSLO Aug 29, 2007 (Dow Jones Newswires)
Siemens AG's (SI) Norwegian unit and Sevan Marine ASA (SEVAN.OS) have joined up to develop new floating electricity-generation platforms to power oil and gas fields more efficiently, cutting emissions, and improving Norway's onshore power balance, the companies said Wednesday.
The combined cycle gas power plants, built on cylindrical floating platforms, could be in production by 2010, Sevan Marine's vice-president of business development, Fredrik Major, said, and would revolutionize the existing power supply network in onshore and offshore Norway.
The floating units would be supplied by gas either from fields or adjacent pipelines and connected to shore by a bi-directional power subsea cable, Major said, enabling surplus power to be shipped to shore to help debottleneck existing imbalances, the companies said.
Norway faces an expected annual electricity import requirement of 12 terawatt-hours by 2010, and also has regional power imbalances, in part due to the heavy demand for power from the offshore oil and gas industry.
Major said Sevan Marine is currently testing interest in its new product from offshore operators and Norway's electricity companies. The company hasn't yet disclosed cost estimates, but said its floating power plants "could produce at comparable prices" compared with onshore gas fired power plants.
A typical 540-megawatt power plant would consume around 2 million cubic meters of gas a day and incorporate carbon dioxide capture and storage, or CCS, including injection of CO2 to a subsea reservoir.
An independent evaluation of the concept of including CCS on the platforms by Norwegian research body Sintef concludes that "a gas cleaning unit may be easily integrated with the floating structure."
Sintef also said: "The units are deemed to be within reasonable reach for delivery to early adopters by 2010."
Sevan Marine uses a case study in the Haltenbank area of the Norwegian continental shelf, with a floating power production unit located near the Draugen field. The 540 MW unit would run on gas from the Halten pipeline or from the Draugen and Asgard transport pipe, and be capable of supplying power to the Draugen, Heidrun, Asgard, Kristin and Njord fields.
Surplus power would be shipped to shore, and CO2 removed from flue gas onboard could be shipped by pipelines to Draugen and Heidrun for improved oil recovery, or IOR, initiatives, Siemens and Sevan Marine said.
Siemens would provide gas and steam turbines for the power plants, and Sevan Marine would own and operate each development on behalf of offshore oil and gas operators under long-term leases.
Copyright (c) 2007 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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