Riser Integrity Management Will Reduce Risks and Costs

Recent spills and riser failures call for more action from operators and the oil and gas industry at large. With good industry support, DNV has now launched a joint industry project (JIP) with the main objective of developing a recommended practice (RP) on riser integrity management.

More focus on riser integrity management (RIM) will reduce risks and costs. Catastrophic consequences such as major accidents and unsafe operations can be minimized. Loss of production and revenue; undue degradation of riser systems, leading to increased operational costs and regulatory non-compliance, can be potentially avoided by adapting to a good RIM practice.

"An integrated lifecycle integrity management approach for riser systems is cost beneficial and an integral part of good technical and business risk management," states Knut ├śrbeck Nilssen, DNV's technology director.

The new recommended practice will cover RIM aspects for Top Tensioned Risers (TTR), Steel Catenary Risers (SCR), Flexibles and Hybrid risers. The RIM approach and philosophy will address both existing and new risers for both shallow and deepwaters.

The intention is to develop a general framework which will cover riser integrity management aspects of the complete riser system, including components and appurtenances.

In developing the new recommended practice, realistic RIM case studies for various riser-floater concepts and different environmental conditions will be used. Examples are TTR in the Gulf of Mexico, SCR in West Africa, riser towers in generic deep waters and flexible risers in the North Sea.

The motivation for focusing on riser integrity management comes from the oil and gas industry itself. Production is moving to deeper waters in new areas, and experience of operating under new conditions is limited. The lack of both validated and proven instrumentation strategies for deepwater risers and real-time data can significantly increase the risk of critical riser components failing.

Five oil and gas majors, seven specialist companies and the major regulatory authorities across the globe are DNV's partners in this JIP.

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