BJ Services Debuts Largest Stimulation Vessel in Ultradeep GOM

Blue Dolphin Stimulation Vessel
(Click to Enlarge)

BJ Services is launching the world's largest high-performance stimulation vessel for oil and gas wells in the Lower Tertiary and other Gulf of Mexico formations. The Blue Dolphin™ stimulation vessel is custom-designed to provide 20,000 psi (138 MPa) working pressure via multiple Coflexip® reeled flexible umbilical lines. Together with accommodations for up to 45 crew members, the vessel can perform
large-volume, high-pressure stimulation operations with minimal downtime for multizone or multiwell operations.


"The advanced capabilities of the Blue Dolphin vessel have made it the flagship of BJ Services' stimulation fleet," said Ronney Coleman, Vice President for North America Pressure Pumping Services, BJ Services. "It is the first 20,000-psi pressure-rated stimulation vessel
specially designed for Lower Tertiary conditions, which include long, multiple pay zones and intense pressure and temperature variations.
Minimizing downtime during well stimulation in these deep environments and on multiwell locations is possible through the advanced pressure specifications, storage capacities and crew accommodations available with this vessel. We can essentially have multiple crews working around the clock to provide large-volume, high-pressure stimulation services."


High-Power Blending and Pumping Capabilities

The Blue Dolphin vessel features a DP-2 dynamic positioning system and will receive well stimulation/offshore support vessel class notation,
certified by the American Bureau of Shipping. It comes equipped with eight skid-mounted 3,000 brake horsepower Gorilla™ fracturing units
and storage capacity for 2.75 million lb of proppant. When necessary, it can provide up to 23,000 hydraulic horsepower and 80 bbl/min (12.7
m3/min) blending rates to meet high-rate fracturing and stimulation requirements of ultra-deepwater projects. At more than 300 ft (91 m)
in length, the multipurpose vessel includes additional storage for up to 11,800 bbl (1875 m3) of fluids or completion brines, 12,600 gal
(47.7 m3) of raw acid and 6,300 gal (23.8 m3) of solvent. Maximumon-the-fly acid blending capacity is 50 bbl/min (7.9 m3/min).


Well Stimulation for Deep, Complex, HP/HT Environments

Gulf of Mexico well completions have become increasingly more complex with the exploration and development of deep formations (20,000+ ft/6096+ m) in water depths beyond 5,000 ft (1524 m). High-pressure and high-temperature (HP/HT) conditions and complex geologies common to these formations require advanced sand control and well stimulation technologies. The Blue Dolphin stimulation vessel is purposely designed to meet a variety of sophisticated frac-pack, gravel-pack, proppant fracturing and acidizing conditions.


Automated Monitoring and Job Control

For job control, the Blue Dolphin vessel features a touch-screen control room with fully automated ratio controls for the addition of proppant and additives. Stimulation processing tanks are continuously monitored with treatment level sensors featuring indication alarms. Wireless transmission of wellhead parameters permits remote monitoring and reporting of job conditions via satellite and backup systems. Additional control room electronics enable remote critical valve processing actuation, full-flow pressure relief valve actuation, and redundant overpressure shutdown capabilities. The vessel is also equipped with fire and gas detection systems on various levels.


The Blue Dolphin stimulation vessel will begin sea trials this fall and will formally join the global BJ Services fleet this winter. The fleet includes multiple stimulation vessels in the Gulf of Mexico, Latin America and the Middle East.


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