Technip Taps Aspen Aerogels for Brazil Subsea Pipeline Insulation

Aspen Aerogels has completed delivery of Spaceloft advanced thermal insulation to Technip for a 21-kilometer subsea natural gas pipeline off the coast of Brazil.

Technip is building the rigid pipeline for the Brazilian state-run oil company Petrobras. The line will connect the Canapu field (1,700 meters deep) to the Cidade de Vitoria floating production facility (1,400 meters deep). Technip already has installed the Spaceloft insulation on the piping at its spoolbase in Mobile, Ala., and transported it to Brazil.

This is the first pipeline in Brazil to use a pipe-in-pipe design (production pipe surrounded by carrier pipe with insulation in between). Technip chose Aspen's patented Spaceloft insulation because it provides the lowest thermal conductivity of any insulation, ensuring minimum temperature drop along the 21-kilometer line, and it is much thinner than other insulation materials, so the outer carrier pipe can be smaller and less costly. Also, Spaceloft comes in flexible blanket form for simplified installation.

Spaceloft insulation has been installed in over 150 kilometers of subsea pipeline, including fields in the Gulf of Mexico, offshore Angola and the North Sea. Studies are underway for future efforts in the Arctic and offshore Australia, where Spaceloft meets demanding thermal requirements and need for simple installation.

Aspen has extensive experience insulating oil and gas pipelines and reservoirs operating between -170 degrees C (cryogenic temperature for liquefied natural gas) and 650 degrees C. Aspen's insulation products are used in applications both upstream (subsea pipelines) and downstream (processing facilities).

Aspen's aerogel insulation is the most reliable and highest performing available. Aspen's products can achieve Overall Heat Transfer Coefficients (OHTC) in pipelines of <0.5 W/m2K, allowing customers to benefit from tiebacks as far as 50 kilometers away. Aspen's products also have been validated to be highly suitable for long life in the high pressure/temperature (HPHT, up to 350 degrees F) of ultra deep water, pipe-in-pipe applications -- the types expected in future offshore assets in the years to come.