DNV to Class First FPSO in the Gulf of Mexico

New boundaries will soon be passed in the Gulf of Mexico. The 360,000 dwt tanker Berge Enterprise is at the moment being converted in Singapore and is scheduled to start production at the Ku-Maloob-Zaap field offshore Mexico in the first quarter 2007. This will be the first FPSO in the Gulf of Mexico and one of the largest globally. The vessel is classed by DNV.

Bergesen Offshore, a company within the Bergesen Group, will own and operate the FPSO (Floating Production, Storage and Offloading vessel) in the Gulf of Mexico under a 15-year term agreement with Pemex, the Mexican state-owned oil and gas company.

This is the first FPSO to be deployed in the Gulf of Mexico and will serve as both a hub in the area and an export terminal.

The 360,000 dwt tanker will be converted into an FPSO with 600,000 bpd handling, inclusive of 200,000 bpd processing capacity, with gas export capability.

This vessel will be classed to DNV Offshore standards. "DNV has been selected for their fast track conversion approach on FPSO," says Tom A. Kristiansen, Director of Engineering and Project Management with Bergesen Worldwide Offshore.

DNV has been a partner with Bergesen for many of the successful fast track FPSO conversions carried out in the past. Major conversion and upgrading work will include the coating of all slop and ballast tanks and the installation of various systems and equipment, including a new and modified cargo system, submerged pumps in tanks, and a new ringmain fire water system. The accommodation will also be upgraded and refurbished to house a complement of 110 persons.

Upon completion, the FPSO will have the third largest oil production capacity of all existing FPSO units in the world, as well as having the largest oil throughput of any FPSO unit. Completion is scheduled for 1Q 2007 and the facility will be stationed at the Ku-Maloob-Zaap field in Mexico's Bay of Campeche, located 105 km north-west of Ciudad del Carmen.