Intec Provides Engineering for Simian Sienna & Sapphire Flds

Building on the success of its contributions to the BG-operated Scarab Saffron project in the West Delta Deep Marine (WDDM) concession, Intec Engineering is providing professional services for the BG-operated Simian Sienna and Sapphire deepwater projects for continued development of the concession offshore Egypt.

The concession, north of the Nile Delta in the Mediterranean Sea, is operated by Burullus Gas Company on behalf of WDDM concession partners BG and Petronas. Burullus Gas is a joint venture company, comprising Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC), Egypt's national oil company, BG-Egypt and Petronas.

Peter Roberts, INTEC's managing director for Europe, Africa and Middle East operations, says INTEC is providing a seamless transfer of expert technology from Scarab Saffron to an integrated management team for Simian Sienna and Sapphire. "Through increased integration of key personnel and hands-on engineering from concept selection through the delivery of hydrocarbons, we're helping BG to create a metaphor for industry change. The result is a more flexible working team, providing rapid response and purposeful solutions for complex issues," said Roberts.

As part of its professional services, INTEC is a member of the Burullus Gas Project Management Team (PMT) for the Simian Sienna and Sapphire projects. As such, INTEC is providing engineering expertise for a world-renowned project that will install deepwater seabed facilities feeding a large-diameter 70-mile long-distance subsea tieback, setting a new industry record.

Shell's Mensa subsea tieback currently holds the record at 68 miles. BG first challenged that record last summer with its 56-mile installation of the large-diameter Scarab Saffron subsea tie-back from wells located in waters up to 2,040 feet to landfall at Idku, Egypt, near Alexandria. The Scarab Saffron pipeline system began producing gas in March 2003.

First hydrocarbons from Simian Sienna wells in waters up to 3,600 feet are planned for third quarter 2005, with pipelines from the fields tying into the new Scarab Saffron WDDM subsea system.

Production from the Simian Sienna wells—located northeast of the Scarab Saffron Fields and 71 miles offshore Idku—will provide feedstock for the Egyptian Liquefied Natural Gas (ELNG) export. The plant is located at Idku.

The Sapphire Field—located west of Scarab Saffron and 46 miles from the Nile Delta shoreline—is a separate development and is scheduled to tie-in to the West Delta Deep system in 2006.

Richard Scarr, BG project general manager for the Simian Sienna and Sapphire development, says that the PMT provides an integrated team of BG and INTEC personnel working toward the same goal: on-time delivery of a state-of-the-art subsea production system within the scheduled budget.

"We're building on lessons learned on Scarab Saffron while utilizing INTEC's technical expertise," said Scarr. He adds that the way in which people are brought together "can make or break a project."

"For a project as complex as Simian Sienna, we believe a reduction of interfaces—in an environment where everyone is on a single team—can yield success for BG and the industry," said Scarr.

For the offshore facilities, the PMT, adds Scarr, will manage the EPIC—Engineering, Procurement, Installation and Commissioning—contract, awarded in May 2003. The EPIC package includes all subsea components and the design, fabrication and installation of a new-build unmanned controls platform.

INTEC—as part of its PMT scope of work and separate from the EPIC contract—also is performing detailed Flow Assurance of the system.

The Simian Sienna project is contracted through INTEC's UK office, representing a first contract—secured independently of INTEC's other global offices—for INTEC Engineering (U.K.) Ltd. INTEC began UK operations in summer 2001 and officially opened its office in Woking, England, in January 2002 to support the needs of customers in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

The UK office, which has about 75 people on staff, began conceptual selection on Simian Sienna in July 2001, evaluating issues including controls, flow assurance, subsea hardware, pipelines and subsea architecture. Over the next three-and-a-half years, INTEC will dedicate approximately 10 people to the project.

In fall 2001, INTEC performed development studies—more commonly know as front-end engineering design (FEED)—for Simian Sienna. The FEED stage evaluated the above items in more depth while also developing the project schedule, a cost estimate, specifications and preparation of the EPIC bid packages for development of the Simian Sienna and Sapphire Fields. The FEED work completed in July 2002.

As a member of the PMT, INTEC was charged with the technical tender evaluation of the EPIC contract. Thereafter, INTEC is responsible for Technical Assurance aspects of the project, including for Simian Sienna:
  • Six subsea christmas trees

  • Two subsea manifolds

  • One tie-in manifold

  • A 26-inch diameter export pipeline

  • A 20-inch diameter in-field pipeline
  • Four 10-inch diameter flowlines from the trees to the manifolds

  • Umbilicals

  • Subsea control system

  • A four-inch diameter vent pipeline

  • A four-inch diameter glycol pipeline

  • Controls platform

  • The Sapphire development utilizes a similar deepwater subsea system, including eight subsea christmas trees.

    While system design uses proven technology, there are several challenges associated with the development, advises Graham Taylor, INTEC's project manager for Simian Sienna through the FEED stage. Some of those challenges include:

  • Avoidance of hydrates

  • Control of chemical injection in required quantities

  • State-of-the-art controls system
  • Large-diameter connectors

  • High production rate trees: 150 million standard cubic feet per day gas

  • "Part of the value that INTEC provides the PMT is a complete review of these systems without bias toward any specific equipment supplier. This 'independence' increases client confidence that all products on the market, regardless of supplier, are investigated and those best-suited to the project are recommended," said Taylor.

    In general, the Simian Sienna and Sapphire developments are each comprised of two production hubs, a 26-inch diameter export pipeline for tie-in to the Scarab Saffron system and a 20-inch diameter in-field pipeline between two manifolds.

    The Simian Sienna and Sapphire pipelines are controlled independently of the Scarab Saffron system, using an electro-hydraulic multiplex system. The controls equipment and a methanol injection unit will be mounted on the controls platform, which will be remotely operated through a combined power and communication umbilical from an onshore facility.

    "The controls system represents an industry first because of a combination of length and system complexity," said Taylor.

    Two main production control umbilicals with combined utilities for electro-hydraulic and chemical from the controls platform—one for Simian Sienna and one for Sapphire—will provide the control function and methanol requirements to the subsea system. Glycol injection into the Simian Sienna and Sapphire developments is planned via a four-inch diameter pipeline directly from an onshore plant.

    Initial development for Simian Sienna consists of six subsea production wells: four in the Simian Field and two in the Sienna Field. Water depths range from 2,221 feet to 3,258 feet. Individual flowlines from the wells are tied back to two manifolds: Two Simian wells and two Sienna wells tie back to manifold M2 in 3,035 feet of water; the 20-inch diameter in-field pipeline originates at manifold M2 and ties back to manifold M1 in 2,221 feet of water, into which the two remaining Simian wells are connected. M1 is a four-slot manifold and M2 is a five-slot manifold, allowing for future expansion of the Simian Sienna system.

    The 26-inch diameter export pipeline originates at M1 and connects into the Scarab Saffron pipeline end manifold (PLEM) via a tie-in manifold in 312 feet of water, some 41 miles from shore.

    The Sapphire Field calls for an initial development of eight production wells in water depths ranging from 1,168 feet to 1,637 feet, with tiebacks to additional manifolds, also named M1 and M2, each with provision for future manifold tie-ins.

    Four wells will tie back to M2. A new 20-inch diameter in-field pipeline will tie back from M2 to M1, along with the tie-in of the remaining four wells. A new 26-inch diameter export pipeline will tie back from M1 to the Scarab Saffron PLEM for tie-in to the WDDM pipeline system.

    "Because of the more complex nature of the Sapphire reservoirs, smart well technology is being utilized for this field," said Taylor.