Pipe Lay System – Technip Kristin, Norne Satellites, Alve & Morvin Projects

The Statoil Kristin Project in 2004 (carried out by Technip Norge AS) required laying of 10″ subsea pipe with simultaneous attachment of a piggyback direct electrical heating (DEH) cable onto the pipe during the lay operation.

In order to attach the cable to the pipe and to provide subsea protection for the cable it was necessary to install heavy duty plastic conduit banded to the pipe during the pipe lay operation in a continuous production process.

This very difficult procedure required a unique and custom designed handling system for transportation of the conduit from the storage area up to a new platform on the top of the pipe ramp and to semi-automate conduit installation onto the cable/pipe during the pipelay operation.

Working closely with the naval architects and structural designers of the system, Melbourne Marine Services we developed a design for the conduit handling systems and supplied, installed and commissioned a trial system.

With many technical risks and difficulties to overcome the project was probably our most ambitious to date.

Deliverables included:

  • Variable speed AC drive systems for the horizontal conveyor & gantry lift elevator.
  • Electrically powered constant tension roller box for conduit assembly.
  • RF telemetry linked cable tension monitoring system.
  • Ancillary pneumatic & hydraulic handling equipment design.

1240065980-18367800All of the equipment was fully designed, built and tested in house before shipping to the Technip Orkanger Spoolbase in Norway.

Installation and pre-commissioning at the construction yard took place over a number of trips before final mobilization onto CSO Apache.

Trials of the final system yielded impressive results with combined pipe/cable lay speeds of up to 400m/hour being achieved. The performance figures met and exceeded the original design specification.

The initial trial system was so successful in the field that a major upgrade was carried out in 2006 for the Norne Satellites project and then again in 2008 for the Morvin & Alve projects. The improvements yielded impressive results and all of the projects were completed on time with faultless system performance.