June 2020

Two-phase Balder decom complete

MDL has completed a double decommissioning scope providing support to Ocean Installer on the Balder X field.

MDL SURF equipment, project engineering team and expert offshore personnel facilitated the recovery of risers and umbilicals on the Balder FPSO, as part of the redevelopment programme on the Norwegian North Sea field.

The work scope was carried out in two stages: in Q4 2019 and Q2 2020, utilising two MDL horizontal spreads on board the Olympic Challenger and Viking Neptun respectively.

For the winter campaign, an MDL 4-track pipelay tensioner and overboarding chute were used to recover the flexibles for cutting on board into 12m sections.

The second campaign used the MDL Horizontal Lay System with the 4-track tensioner to recover various products in 2- and 4- track mode which were then cut into sections for disposal during the recovery operations.

By using the MDL HLS, Ocean Installer was able to safely remove approximately 130 buoyancy modules during recovery, via the use of the integrated runway beams, complete with certified air hoists to deck without the use of the vessel crane.

Decommissioning of the lines allows for the FPSO to transit to the shore for life extension works, ahead of the planned field expansion programme.

Steve Morrison, MDL Project Engineering Manager, said:

“We are delighted we were able to support Ocean Installer on another important project, aiming to extend the working life of the field and of its producing assets for the field operator.

“Our flexible and open approach ensured that we were ready to step in at the appropriate stages of the project, working to the client’s schedule. This included a safe mobilisation of our assets and personnel in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Following the recent engineering and execution of transpooling of MEG lines, we look forward to continuing our support to Ocean Installer in Norway and globally.

“We also invite other contractors to discuss with us their decommissioning needs, where our pipelay technology, operations and engineering expertise will ensure safe and cost-conscious methodology for end- of-life operations.”