The Deck was installed in Nigerian waters using the so-called float-over method. This involves placing the Deck on a Transportation vessel and outfitting the vessel with equipment to enable it to be pulled between the pre-installed Jacket legs and then for the load to be transferred from the vessel to the jacket in a controlled manner.
The float-over was the second phase of the EPC1b project, the third and final phase will commence on October 25 using HMC’s SSCV (semi-submersible crane vessel) Hermod. The first phase took place in 2006 when HMC's SSCV Thialf installed the GX Jacket.
The GX Deck weighed approx. 11,000 ton and was fabricated by HHI (Hyundai Heavy Industries) in Korea. Following a 37-day sail to Nigeria, Heerema mobilized three tugs, an accommodation support vessel and over 80 persons to manage the float-over operation. The actual float-over completion date of October 14 was only two days behind the original schedule agreed with HHI over two years previously. The two-day delay was due to inclement weather at the very end.
Project Manager Alan Paige says that “although the float-over crew had to operate in difficult conditions they once again demonstrated that having the hardware is only part of the story and that it is the people that make the difference between success and failure.”
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