Oil platforms are putting out to sea

“Petronas Charigali (Turkmenistan)” Company is one of operators on production of oil and gas on the Turkmen shelf of Caspian Sea. It is the subsidiary of the Malaysian Company “Petronas”, which ranks among the top five leading oil and gas companies of the world on production volume. Our correspondent visited the seaside - the facilities of “Petronas” Company.

Where the waves and seagulls…

Blades of “Sikorsk” cut the air over cabin of helicopter, where we in wet suits and life preservers are going to leave for sea platforms of Malaysian Company. Twenty minutes of flight over choppy in this season of the year Caspian Sea – and pilots of airline “Bristow” drop off our group in the middle of sea on heliport of offshore platform named after Magtymguly. Boundless waves and seagulls flying over deck are around…

I arrived here together with relief workers – crew, which includes technicians, controlling the production process, mechanical engineers, electricians, specialists, and motormen, “dozen” of highly qualified specialists. During two weeks, they will provide twenty-four-hour service of equipment of the platform and be responsible for uninterrupted production of gas and gas condensate from wells in the sea as well as for transportation of natural raw material through offshore pipelines to the coast.

Offshore platform named after Magtymguly is the only platform of such type on shelf of Turkmen sector of the Caspian Sea – according to technological design and high level of safety. It provides in automated regime the production from offshore wells of hydrocarbon product, separation and pumping into arterial pipelines of 350 thousand cubic meters of natural gas and 25 thousand barrels of gas condensate per day. Highly qualified staff, which had in-depth training course at the facilities of the largest foreign companies, work here.

The staff of this producing platform of “Petronas Charigali (Turkmenistan)” Company gained wide popularity after visit of offshore deposit by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, who particularly noted the congruence of action of the crew, high manufacturability and absolute ecological compatibility of the offshore facility.

In the near future, on the boring platform BMP-A, it will be started the drilling of another three wells that allows in future producing higher volume of valuable raw material – gas and condensate.

Presently, three over 70 kilometer-long lines of pipelines have been linked up to the platform for transit to the gas-purifying plant in Kiyanly settlement of natural gas and condensate, as well as “methanolic” line – for delivery of chemicals, preventing the emergence of hydrates in both lines.

Recently, another line from platform set in “Diyarbekir” deposit was linked up to the collector platform. In the near future, it is planned here the production of oil and associated gas. So, oil will be also pumped to the coast from this platform.

On the contractual territory “Block # 1”

On the contractual territory “Block # 1”, the first offshore platform started to operate in 2006. It was the mobile offshore exploitation production installation and floating oil-loading storage, which were put into operation by the operator of contractual territory “Block # 1” in the course of the started experimental-industrial exploitation of offshore deposit. By then, “Petronas Charigali (Turkmenistan)” Company was an active operator of contractual territory as far as in July 1996, it made with the Ministry of Oil and Gas Industry and Mineral Resources of Turkmenistan a Product-sharing agreement and obtained from the Agency on management and use of hydrocarbon resources at the President of Turkmenistan the licence for exploring and production of oil and gas on the coastal offshore territory “Block # 1”. Within several years, the company conducted a series of successful seismic researches and exploratory operations on the sea shelf, which allowed discovering on this area the huge oil and gas reserves.

Having started the development of territory from experimental-industrial oil production, the Malaysian operator proceeded to the development of gas deposits of “Block # 1”. Three years ago, it was erected the gas processing plant and overland gas terminal. On July 12, 2011, the plant was put into exploitation with participation of President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and Prime Minister of Malaysia Dato Sri Mohd Najip Tun Abdul Razak.

Tank gas - from Kiyanly

Presently, the largest gas complex, containing the natural gas processing plant, shop for collection of offshore platforms and residential township for personnel, is functioning not far from fishing village Kiyanly. The coastal infrastructure on production and processing of gas besides the gas processing plant includes offshore collector and boring platforms connected with “coast” by marine pipelines, gas condensate storage with volume of over 300000 barrels and 52.7-kilometer long overland export pipeline, transporting “blue fuel” to consumers.

The enterprise was fitted with modern gas-cleaning equipment from world-famous companies “Emerson” and “Rolls-Royce” (USA), “Weatherford” (Switzerland) and “Schlumberger” (France, USA) and other companies. The plant with capacity of 5 billion cubic meters of natural gas and 2.4 million tons of gas condensate per year – fully automated enterprise was erected with participation of the leading companies from Turkey, Malaysia and France.

At present, the technological lines are managed only by nearly 130 specialists of various profiles. At that, a bulk of personnel of gas producing and processing complex is the residents of Turkmenistan. Workers of the leading professions of the plant and offshore platforms - process technicians, mechanical engineers, and electrical technicians passed two-year training courses in other oil and gas producing companies or in technical training center “Petronas” created at the plant in 2011. In the center, there are wonderful auditoriums for theoretical lessons, computer classes, shops, where it is possible to master definite skills. Within three years, four groups with 40-45 persons each underwent the training.

Oil will be produced at “Diyarbekir”

Presently, on the territory of the plant near technological lines on gas processing, “Huindai” Company expanded the construction of new industrial site. Here, within the framework of new project of “Petronas” Company on development of oil deposits of marine shelf, it will be mounted powerful separation equipment for dividing hydrocarbon raw material mined from the depths – oil, condensate and associated gas. Simultaneously with expansion and modification of coastal infrastructure, it is carried out the expansion of the offshore part of the complex on oil production. In particular, “Diyarbekir” deposit is accomplished at full scale. In the assembly shop of the complex, it was collected and set in the sea on bored wells two platforms called “Central Diyarbekir” and “Western Diyarbekir”. Owing to them, according to calculations of the specialists, up to 10 thousand barrels of oil will be extracted from these oil fields every day.

At present, on these platforms, which are practically ready for production, it is realized the adjustment and testing of complicated equipment, which will operate automatically with remote control. By new year, the platforms will be ready to realize the intake from wells of oil and associated gas, and in March after stabilization regime, the hydrocarbon raw material will be transported through available pipeline to the collector (platform named after Magtymguly) and from there – to the separation system of the plant in Kiyanly.

Structures obtain the shape

The second part of project on engineering of oil beds of shelf on the territory of “Block # 1” will become the development of “Western Garagol-Deniz” deposit. For realization of this project, the construction of new platform is implemented in the assembly shop with capacity of 25 thousand tons of metal per year. Superintendent of the assembly center Muhammed Zamri considers that platform for “Western Garagol-Deniz” deposit will be completed by April of next year.

Now, this huge metal structure rises above assembly site of the shop. The height of giant foundation of the platform is over 80 meters. On this foundation, it is will be mounted the working section of the platform, which is also located not far from moorage wherefrom the finished platforms will transport through sea to the deposit.

- We receive the parts of future marine structures from Malaysia and here on the sites we realize their assemblage. Usually for construction of a platform, it is essential minimum one and a half year, - explains Muhammed Zamri. – We employ highly qualified welders, fitters, engineers – electricians, builders, quality controllers – in total, nearly 60 persons. At that, the seventy percent of employees – local population. Owing to their participation, within five years, it was mounted practically all platforms set in the sea, including the platforms at “Diyarbekir” deposit. During the construction of gas-purifying plant, the shop assembled metalwares, welded pipelines and other major links.

Soon, another facility will appear not far from the assemble shop. For support of marine operations in the Caspian Sea, the leadership of the company agreed with Agency on management and use of hydrocarbon resources at the President of Turkmenistan the designing of the construction project in Kiyanly of supply base, which is located now far from major facilities of coastal infrastructure of the company. Here, it was constructed such offshore facilities as powerful breakwater, defensing moorage, as well as laying of deep-sea fairway for sea crafts, which will deliver the freight for the company, is under completion. It is planned the construction of crane union, covered storages and sites for open stocking, office and other essential buildings and structures.

Modernizing the coastal infrastructure, installing on the shelf the new producing platforms, “Petronas Charigali (Turkmenistan)” Company plans to increase considerably the oil production. So, the development of earlier practically untouched deposits of the Turkmen sector of the Caspian Sea, having enough oil reserves, is included into long-term plans of the company.