Snohvit Subsea Systems Go Onstream

The start-up of subsea systems at the Snohvit field off Hammerfest, northern Norway, was completed Monday.

Snohvit is the first field on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) that can be remotely operated from land. The subsea development has been completed within budget at just under NOK 8 billion, and without harmful discharges to the sea.

"The entire subsea system has been project approved and just handed over to the operations organization," said Gunnar Myreboe, who heads the Snohvit subsea development. "We're taking the wellstream ashore to the land plant now, while we have a vessel out at the field. This vessel will leave the field in the next few days."

Subsea template equipment at Snohvit, the main pipeline to shore and all involved control systems are now onstream. The wellstream forces out water left in the main pipeline since pipe-laying was completed in the autumn of 2005. Water expulsion itself is managed from the onshore control room and began on 24 May. The wellstream now remains in the pipeline as far as the slug catcher - the first treatment stage at the process plant - until this is brought onstream during the course of the summer.

All Snohvit's offshore systems are located on the seabed and are controlled from land via a 144-kilometer control cable. The wellstream is transported ashore via a 143-kilometer pipeline. Both pipeline and cable are the world's longest of their kind and represent advances in equipment and multiphase technology developed on the NCS.

No ships or platforms will be visible at sea level when Snohvit comes onstream.

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