The Vigdis boosting system is also leveraging an all-electric control system, paving the way for further electrification of subsea facilities worldwide in the years to come.
Unlocking sustainable value through brownfield compression factory. The Ormen Lange Phase 3 project currently underway is an example of the deployment of a brownfield subsea multiphase compression system in a field that was put on stream in 2007, unlocking a significant amount of value in the form of increased recovery from this giant gas field. The multiphase compression system will be installed on the seabed at 900-m depth approximately 120 km from shore, setting a new world record for subsea compression power step-out. The project is designed to unlock an additional 30 to 50 billion cubic meters of natural gas, increasing Ormen Lange’s overall recovery factor from 75 to 85%.
The subsea compression system will be powered with hydro-generated electricity from the Nyhamna onshore gas processing plant. This is the world’s first example of a subsea processing system that completely removes the need to build and operate a platform, the very representation of a “subsea-to-beach” development, and accordingly a major milestone for the industry.
Project development costs have been significantly reduced as compared with alternative concepts and this is a strong indicator of the competitive value of the subsea factory, provided the right technology is implemented. The subsea factory that will be installed in the Ormen Lange Field will enable significant reduction in energy consumption, and thereby CO2 emissions, as opposed to a topside compression platform. This demonstrates the enormous contribution of the subsea factory and the potential to greatly reduce the carbon footprint associated with these field developments.
The gas produced in the Ormen Lange Field is exported to the UK and represents an approximated 20% of the UK energy supply. This gas is a major contributor toward a coal-free UK, which in turn is helping reduce emissions further as coal is replaced by gas at lower-carbon intensity.
The Future of Subsea Processing Systems
Subsea processing is a key technology for the future. Even with the rapid deployment of renewables, blue hydrogen—from natural gas or natural gas power generation with or without carbon capture, utilization, and storage—will be a major contributor to the energy mix in the next decades. Accordingly, the unparalleled energy efficiency and recovery factor associated with subsea processing is enabled by technology that is powering an exciting oil and gas energy transition.