The Aasta Hansteen “spar” is a floating installation consisting of a vertical column moored to the seabed. The installation features conventional topsides with processing facilities and will be built by Hyundai Heavy Industries in conjunction with Technip, and the delivery from the South Korean shipyard has been assigned to Dockwise.
In addition, plans were also submitted by Statoil and their JV partners for the installation and operation of the world’s deepest 36-inch flowline which will carry the produced gas 480-kilometers south from the Aasta Hansteen field to the shore-based pipeline terminal at Nyhamna in Møre og Romsdal county. This USD $4.5 billion subsea gas conduit called Polarled will tie in to a number of other fields along the way and represents a step forward in the development of the petroleum activities in the Norwegian Sea.
“We are very pleased to take another step in the development of Norwegian Sea activities together with our partners. Aasta Hansteen will be the first deep-water development in the Norwegian Sea,” says Oystein Michelsen, executive vice president, Development and Production Norway.
“At the same time this opens for the tie-in of existing and new discoveries. The development may generate substantial ripple effects in the north,” says Michelsen.
The Aasta Hansteen field operations will be run from Harstad, Statoil’s new Operations North organisation. The supply base will be located in Sandnessjøen and the helicopter base in Brønnøysund.
The risers transporting the gas from the seabed to the platform and further to Polarled will be pure steel which will be first of its kind on the Norwegian continental shelf.
The hull will be fitted with storage for condensate. The condensate will be loaded to shuttle tankers at the field.
Polarled opens for gas in the Norwegian Sea
“Polarled will open a new region and facilitate further exploration activities and development of future discoveries in the area. This will contribute substantially to maintaining the role of the Norwegian continental shelf as a long-term, reliable gas supplier,” says Statoil’s executive vice president for mid- and downstream operations, Eldar Saetre.
The project includes expansion of the Shell-operated gas plant at Nyhamna.
A separate pipeline between Polarled and the Kristin platform will connect new infrastructure to existing infrastructure on Haltenbanken (Åsgard Transportation). In addition preparations will be made for the tie-in of existing and future discoveries in the area.
Ripple effects and opportunities
Statoil aims to create local and regional ripple effects. Together with the supplier network PetroArctic Statoil identified the opportunities for competitive deliveries from North-Norwegian communities and other bidders in the supply industry at an early stage of the project.
During the spring of 2013 Statoil will award the main contract s for topsides, subsea facilities, pipeline, pipe-laying, marine operations and drilling. There will also be contract opportunities when the field comes on stream. .
“The greatest and most long-term ripple effects will normally occur in the operating phase. We would like the Aasta Hansteen development to drive industrial development in the north,” says Margareth Øvrum, executive vice president for Technology, Projects and Drilling.
The main contracts for the Aasta Hansteen project will be based on studies performed by Norwegian and international suppliers.