Big farewell to giant platform

On Thursday the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform will leave Aibel’s yard in Haugesund to be installed and linked up in the field. This marks the disappearance of the distinct landmark that has characterized the city since September last year.

Aibel JSDP 0662
All photos: Øyvind Sætre/Aibel.

Three years and three months after Prime Minister Erna Solberg graced the contract award in February 2015, Aibel’s largest project ever is ready for departure from the company’s yard in Haugesund. The entire project, from initial engineering to finished platform, has been important to Aibel in several ways.

“Being awarded the contract for the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform was a major vote of confidence from Equinor and came at a very convenient time for Aibel and the Norwegian supplier industry. Engineering and construction has ensured good and stable employment in several areas in the company, not least at the yard in Haugesund, and has acted as a cushion, but not a reprieve, at a time characterized by reduced activity and lay-offs. The project also proves that we have a competitive delivery model. For this reason, throughout the project we have continuously identified and implemented improvements in our way of working, so that we will remain competitive in the years ahead,” says Aibel’s CEO Mads Andersen.

The 147 metre tall and 22,000 ton drilling platform consists of three modules built at Aibel’s yards in Haugesund and Thailand and at Nymo in Grimstad. After assembly of the three modules in Klosterfjorden in September last year, completion of the drilling platform has taken place at the yard in Haugesund.

Aibel Equinor A èpendag 3374

A farewell from the whole city

The departure from the yard on Thursday will be marked with a ceremony for invited guests, representatives from the companies involved and the media, but this past weekend the city of Haugesund and the rest of Haugalandet were invited to a farewell party.

“The Johan Sverdrup drilling platform has been very visible in the cityscape. This is why we, in collaboration with Equinor, wanted to give the entire region a unique opportunity to come inside the yard’s gates and take in the giant up close. It was a public celebration for young and old, and hopefully a day people won’t forget very soon,” the CEO says.

Slightly less than 6,000 people visited Aibel’s yard on Saturday, of which almost 3,000 people were on board the Johan Sverdrup drilling platform. The farewell party was concluded with a star-studded concert in Haugesund, where performers such as Henny, Aria, Seeb and Madcon entertained almost 8,000 spectators.

Aibel Equinor Torgbakken 270518 9059

New Sverdrup project coming up

In April, Aibel received proof that the company is still competitive and has performed well on the drilling platform project. Equinor awarded Aibel the contract for engineering, procurement and construction of the deck for the process platform (P2) for phase two in the Johan Sverdrup development. The contract is valued at approximately NOK 8 billion, and is one of the largest single contracts in the history of Norwegian oil and gas.

“This is the ultimate proof that we have the right expertise and the required competitive ability, and that the customer is satisfied. Throughout the entire drilling platform project we have collaborated closely with Equinor and experienced good support. We’re looking forward to building on this in the next years with the P2 platform,” Andersen says.

Aibel has already started the initial engineering activities in the P2 project, while start up for construction will be in the first quarter of 2019. The finished deck is to be delivered to Equinor in the first half of 2022.