General Manager of Total E&P Borneo BV (TEPB) explains logistics
Bandar Seri Begawan - Exciting times lie ahead for the country in the oil and gas sector as Total E&P Borneo BV's (TEPB) initiatives will lead to heightened development in the coming years.
The international company has set in motion a number of projects that will enhance supply to the Brunei Liquefied Natural Gas plant and the setting up of facilities to accommodate these positive changes as well as concentrating on enhancing the capabilities of local human resources as part of 'Total's local content development.
The past years and months have been busy times for TEPB as it continues to overcome challenges in extracting the precious natural resource but such obstacles are proving to be conquerable as TEPB remains steadfast and is pushing forward as it makes its way to assist its counterparts, the nation and its people in Brunei's pursuit for success.
What is currently taking shape, said TEPB, is the progress being made at two wells in the Maharaja Lela Jamalulalam field that were successfully explored and drilled in 2010 with start-up production from these areas scheduled to yield output within the first quarter of 2015 once the planned infrastructures are put in place.
Below is the response to the Borneo Bulletin from the General Manager of Total E&P Borneo BV (TEPB), Mr Yves Grosjean, highlighting what is to be expected in the very near future.
"Local content development in the countries where Total operates is a strategic objective to which Total E&P Borneo (TEPB) adheres to. TEPB and its partners ("BBJV" - the Block B Joint Venture) are fully committed to ensuring their best efforts to fulfil the aspirations of the Brunei Government to maximise Bruneian content in their projects and in their more routine operations. Within the scope of the MLS Project, there is indeed, a strong drive to maximise the share of the MLS platform construction that will be carried out in Brunei.
"The MLS Project will develop new reserves and resources discovered in the Southern area of the Total operated Maharaja Lela Jamalulalam field (MU) that started production from Block B in 1999. This incremental development will produce additional separate reservoir compartments that are much deeper than the ones currently producing.
"The MLS Project will allow, increasing and extending significantly the plateau production - for at least five years - to enhance the supply to the Brunei LNG plant. Located approximately 50km offshore in 65 metres of water and adjacent to the two existing Normally Un-Manned (NUM) platforms named MLJ1 and MLJ2, a new NUM 12-slot platform (MLJ3) will be installed with the plan to initially drill six development wells.
"The additional slots are required to enable the development of other identified reservoir compartments. The gas and condensate production from the new MLJ3 platform will be tied in to the existing multi-phase sea-line that goes to the onshore processing plant (OPP), located in Lumut, where the production is treated. OPP requires debottlenecking to accommodate the higher production rates.
"The first phase of project works, after completing the development studies, was the basic engineering to be carried out by a specialised company. The contract was tendered in December 2011 and awarded to Technip Geoproduction Sdn Bhd (located in Malaysia) in March 2012. Technip subcontracted all the scope related to the offshore platform to Bruneian company Petrokon Utama Sendirian Berhad (located in Kuala Belait).
"This scope represented a major Step change for Petrokon since it was the first time for this company that such a large scope was handled, and within a tight schedule and that they had to design 15,000 psi High Pressure/High Temperature facilities.
"The Basic Engineering works were completed in September 2012 to the satisfaction of Total. Petrokon has achieved more than 45 per cent of the total of 120,000 man-hours.
"Another objective of this basic engineering phase was to encourage the development of Bruneian engineers: Technip recruited and trained three junior Bruneian engineers while three engineers from Petrokon were sent to Technip Malaysia to learn about the working practices of an international engineering company
"The Invitation to Tender for the Surface Facilities project was sent to pre-qualified bidders for a turn-key contract covering Engineering, Procurement, Construction, Installation and Commissioning. The Surface Facilities part of the project includes a new platform, the debottlenecidng of the onshore processing plant, and a tie-in to the existing sea-line.
"The bidders have been asked to properly assess part of the works that can be carried out in Brunei, with the objective to maximise the local content while matching the tight schedule, and of course, respecting good oilfield practice.
"A market survey of engineering and construction capacities and capabilities in Brunei has been carried out at the request of TEPB during the first half of this year, by a Bruneian company called Lylsen.
"Amongst the opportunities identified by this survey, only one could possibly be considered today. This is currently a simple storage area located in Muara, which PetroleumBRUNEI plans to upgrade to a level that will enable the eventual further development into a conventional offshore construction yard.
"The challenge arises from the current situation where the identified yard requires a significant transformation to be a fully operational construction yard. This will take time as it requires trained human resources and fully commissioned equipment and tools to be capable of safely delivering quality works on schedule.
"The time required to complete the development of the yard is very short as it has to match with the overall tight schedule of the project that is driven by the gas delivery commitments. Indeed, platform installation must be completed in Q3 2014 to achieve first gas in Q1 2015. The yard therefore needs to be fully operational by Q2 2013.
"According to the scope they will have to mobilise required resources and equipment and tooling to start-up the yard and ensure that HSE, Quality, and processes are fully in place in order to achieve their scope of work, all that within a tight schedule."
Commenting on the progress of gas discoveries two years ago as mentioned in a recent article published by Upstream International, Mr Yves Grosjean said: "The two gas finds referred to in Upstream are the ML-5 and ML-6 successful exploration wells that were drilled in 2010 and established new records for the region in terms of maximum vertical depth reached by the wells (about 5,700 metres below sea-level) and positive production testing (300,000 standard cubic metres of gas per day and 35 cubic metres per day of petroleum condensates) at 5,350 metres below sea-level.
'As we have already commented in the past, these wells were drilled in reservoir compartments separated by faults from the producing field, located much deeper and around six km to the south of the producing compartments. The two wells which cost up to US$100 million each were plugged and abandoned as they are not properly located for the production phase. Six new wells are necessary for the production phase and in view of the location of the target reservoirs at depth, a new platform is required to drill those wells.
"This platform will not be manned, following the operating practice established for the two existing platforms. It will be adapted to the specific very high pressure regime of the new reservoirs. The platform design will actually allow the drilling of up to 12 wells. Indeed we have identified several other minor reservoir compartments that will require additional production wells.
"The production capacity of the platform and wells will be approximately six million standard cubic metres per day. The platform will be connected to the existing pipeline that links the existing platforms MLJ1 and MLJ2 to the Onshore Processing Plant (OPP) located in Lumut.
"The connection will involve special corrosion resistant pipes in order to take into account the fluid composition and pressure/temperature. The extent of the additional reserves justifies an increase in capacity of the plant in OPP, which will allow boosting annual production levels from the current 3.7 to 5.0 million standard cubic metres per day annual average. The start-up of the production from the new platform with the increase capacity at OPP is scheduled in Q1 2015.
"The challenges are mostly related to the well architecture that is required to ensure double safety barriers at all times, in view of the pressures encountered. The tubulars to be lowered in the wells will involve special-alloys and thicknesses requiring extensive quality assurance programmes. These will push a bit further the limits of the technology."--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin