To bring the UK pipeline industry up-to-date on the latest developments in its range of pipeline system flow assurance capabilities, TDW Offshore Services A.S. hosted its first conference in Aberdeen this month. The conference, entitled "If You Could Reduce Downtime, Would You?" spotlighted the many ways in which pipeline downtime can be reduced when it becomes necessary to make critical repairs or conduct planned maintenance and inspection services.
In the wake of Hurricane Katrina and the damage inflicted on pipeline systems in the Gulf of Mexico, there is a rising trend in the industry to thoroughly prepare for natural disasters and potential pipeline disruption, especially subsea. "Emergency Preparedness for Subsea Pipelines -- EPRS," delivered by Jon Major, Vice-President of TDW Offshore Services, highlighted the need to prepare for emergencies, whether it be hurricanes or an anchor dragging on a pipeline, pulling it out of alignment.
This assessment allowed TDW to quickly mobilize a double-block module 20-inch SmartPlug tool to the platform where it was temporarily installed. The isolation operation was completed in just 10 days. Prior assessment of the Independence system for isolation emergencies permitted a record-breaking response by TDW with regard to the isolation of this important riser.
According to TDW, the operation is one of the fastest mobilizations the company has ever carried out, due in part to the advance preparation of the SmartPlug operation. The flex-joint repair was achieved without degassing and flooding the riser, and re-commissioning it post-repair, which would have been far more costly in terms of production downtime and marine spread cost.
"We are extremely pleased with the quality of the sessions, and the range of companies represented at our first technical conference in the UK," said Gordon Blair, UK Sales Manager for TDW Offshore Services. "It was an excellent opportunity to discuss the challenges faced by the pipeline industry, as well as potential solutions."
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