Fugro to Position World's Largest TLP

Fugro Survey will undertake the crucial positioning work to install the world's largest tension leg platform (TLP) on the Kizomba-A oilfield off Angola. The platform has to be positioned to an accuracy of less than a meter in water depths of 1180 meters.

The contract was awarded to Fugro by Heerema Marine Contractors who will install the TLP for the field operators. The TLP will be transported from Holland and installed at Kizomba using the float-over method to connect to pre-installed piles and tendons. ''We will use a full range of DGPS-based positioning systems to attain the accuracies required,'' said FSBV's Peter Aarts. ''We will combine our Starfix.HP method with other systems to achieve decimetric accuracy for the whole installation.

''This will draw on our previous work where we used our ROV-mounted in-house developed ADV tool to establish precise water levels over the Kizomba TLP site. This established the basis for the levels of all piles, wellheads and other installations and so was a key element in the project.''

When the TLP has been installed it will form part of the overall production scenario for the Kizomba-A project which will see a combination of the TLP with its surface wellheads and subsea wells tied back to the world's largest FPSO (Floating Production, Storage and Offloading) vessel with a 2.2 million barrel storage capacity. The nearby Kizomba-B development will essentially duplicate that of Kizomba-A.

Fugro has been involved with the Kizomba project from the time of the wildcat drilling program in 1997-1999 which resulted in six discoveries. Fugro positioned the drilling rigs during all of the exploration phase.

During the Kizomba-A development Fugro precisely positioned the casings for 36 wells with accuracies of 1foot in the horizontal and 6inches in the vertical plane and to within 1degree inclination to enable the tie-ins of flowlines and jumpers. This was assisted by using Fugro's multi-purpose survey and installation vessel Skandi Carla to deploy frame-mounted acoustic positioning transponder arrays in the batch drilling area. The same exercise is being carried out for the Kizomba-B development.

All operations were supported by Fugro's Angolan office in Luanda, which proved an invaluable addition to the offshore operations.

Esso is the operator of Kizomba-A with 40 percent, other participants in Block 15 are BP Exploration (Angola) Limited with 26.67 percent, Agip Exploration Angola B.V. with 20 percent and Statoil with the remaining 13.33 percent. Sonangol is the concessionaire.