The crowning glory

Aibel reached a preliminary climax in the construction of the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform right before midnight on Monday, when the final of three modules was lifted into place in Klosterfjorden.

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No doubt that the lift of the 90 meters high and 3,000 tons Drilling Equipment Set (DES) was a worthy ending of the spectacular operation, where three modules with a total weight of approx. 22,000 tons have been connected within three days. (All images: Øyvind Sætre/Aibel)

“This is the crowning glory so far and a huge milestone for the largest project in Aibel’s history. I’m very proud of all the people that have put a lot of effort, and still do, into this in order to make it a successful project, where we along the way and in the end will deliver on time and at the right quality,” says Stig Jessen, Aibel’s Project Director for the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform.

The assembly of the three platform modules in Klosterfjorden is one of the largest inshore marine operations in Norwegian history.

“Through two and a half years, our own skilled team has had close collaboration with Statoil, Heerema and other involved parties to plan the operation minute by minute. That effort is now paying off in form of a safe and successful execution in accordance with our plans,” says Jessen.

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The crowning glory almost in place right before midnight.

The main activities of the operation have been to connect the three modules that constitute the drilling platform for the Johan Sverdrup field. The first lift was carried out early Sunday morning. The crane vessel Thialf lifted the 10,250 tons heavy Main Support Frame (MSF), built at Aibel’s yard in Thailand, on board the integration barge. The following day, the Drilling Support Module (DSM), weighing approx. 8,000 tons and built by Aibel in Haugesund, was lifted into place on top of the MSF. The lift of the Drilling Equipment Set (DES) from Aibel’s partner Nymo in Grimstad concluded the lifting activities and left one joined platform, which including the grillage is 147 meters tall and weighs approx. 22,000 tons.

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Three modules connected into one platform soon heading for Aibel's yard in Haugesund.

Later on Tuesday, the platform will begin its journey towards Aibel’s yard in Haugesund. Here it will be moored in autumn and winter, while all installations will be completed, and equipment and systems will be tested and verified. In early summer 2018, the largest platform deck ever built by Aibel will be handed over to Statoil and head for the field in the North Sea.

In addition, Aibel has been awarded the contract for hook-up of the drilling platform at the Johan Sverdrup field in summer 2018. The hook-up will involve up to 600 employees in rotation until the summer of 2019.

Published 2017-09-05, 14:44 CET Updated 2017-09-05, 14:44 CET

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