Virtual Shipyards in Brazil – Still a long way to go to supply the demand for ships from the O&G Industry
Most of the new shipyards to be built in Brazil are still on the drawing board. The exceptions are the Inhaúma yard, which was taken over by Petrobras and is being renovated as a ship repair yard, and the OSX shipyard which will be located within the Açu port complex in the northern part of the state of Rio de Janeiro. As both the port and the shipyard are owned by the EBX group, which also owns OGX OIL & GAS, they have guaranteed orders and have already received a partial environmental license and construction has already begun. The orders are guaranteed by the demand for ships from OGX, so they do not depend directly on orders from Petrobras.
New Impulse for Fisheries in Rio
The fisheries industry in Rio de Janeiro particularly and in Brazil in general, has historically received few investments from the government or the private sector. In reality, even fisheries monitoring, regulations and inspections are lax, at best. Many species have become basically extinct, such as the large lobster. This many soon begin to change. Recently the environmental secretary for Rio de Janeiro, Carlos Minc, announced that investments in fisheries and aquaculture will be included as part of the demands for local environmental licensing. This will be mostly directed to industrial environmental licensing in the north part of Rio but will eventually be an integral demand in all environmental licensing procedures along the coast of Rio.
VetcoGray´s Metal-to-Metal Sealing Technology
The increase in exploratory O&G programs around the world and specifically the deepwater exploration programs being undertaken at the GOM, in West Africa and Brazil has caused major improvements and new technologies and materials to be employed in subsea equipment, such as BOPs, wellhead systems, risers, manifolds, flowlines, drilling fluids among others. GE´s VetcoGray has developed an interesting seal technology for its subsea wellheads. Named MS seal, it is based on Metal-to-metal sealing technology. All VetcoGray subsea wellheads use metal-to-metal sealing technology, which is superior to elastomer options because it prevents inevitable heat and corrosive fluids from damaging seal integrity. Both the wellhead and hanger have a sealing area of parallel wickers.
Coastal Monitoring, Preservation and Research Investments in Brazil
As huge investments are made in Brazil to develop the country`s O&G potential, actions targeting preservation of coastal and underwater ecosystems along the Brazilian coast are still lacking. With the Brazilian coast being 7,491 km long, it is even understandable that the Brazilian government, Petrobras and environmental agencies, find it difficult to expand coastal preservation projects to include the whole coast including the thousands of coastal islands. Petrobras has been making important investments in preservation of coastal and underwater ecosystem along the Brazilian coast, sponsoring far reaching projects in various areas, such as preservation of coastal flora and fauna, fisheries management and environmental education programs for coastal communities.
Full Shipyards in Brazil
Brazilian shipyards are trying to become internationally competitive in terms of product quality, pricing and keeping to deadlines. There are presently around 280 units in construction in Brazil, including PSVs, tankers and rigs, with a workforce of around 56 thousand and growing. The shipyards are full to capacity and even though there are over twenty new yards being built, there is still a demand for more. One of the main problems faced by these new yards is to maintain a high quality standard in order to compete with experienced foreign yards. This is no easy feat. However many of these new yards being built have some form of partnership with international shipyards, looking to enter the Brazilian market.
MiniROVs – Deep Trekker
As work class ROVs used in the O&G industry and S&R missions reach new peaks in demand, small inspection class ROVs, better known as mini or micro ROVS are also becoming accessible to the general public. These light weight ROVs come in various shapes and sizes, although most models are limited to shallow water depths, there are exceptions and the probability is high that in the near future these MiniROVs will be capable of reaching deeper waters. Based in southern Ontario, Canada, Deep Trekker Inc. is specialized in the design and manufacture affordable subsea exploration tools, targeting the growing world consumer market for U/W exploration tools.
NUTECMAR – Mini ROV leader in Brazil
With the sharp increase in ship and shipyard construction, port construction and port safety awareness, all prompted by the mayor pre-salt and post salt oil discoveries off Brazil, many new local service companies, specialized in subsea services have been launched. Some of them are actually developing, Work Class ROV´s in Brazil using foreign or even locally developed technology. There has also been a marked demand increase for smaller ROV´s to be used in various fields including video inspection, side-scan sonar mapping, marine environmental research and training. It is likely that demand for small AUV´s will be increasing steadily as they can be very useful for environmental research…
OSX looking at building drill rigs for Petrobras
With the work on its new shipyard underway, OSX, the shipbuilding and ship rental company belonging to the EBX Group, is planning on entering tenders in order to try and get a piece of the contracts for 21 drillers for Petrobras. The OSX shipyard is being built within the Açu Port area (the Açu Port is also in construction and is also owned by the same EBX Group). Sete Brasil is administering the construction of the 21 drillers, which will then be leased to Petrobras. Petrobras itself will oversee the tender process. Sete Brasil is one of the local companies participating in the tender and they have already been awarded the contract for construction of the seven first drillers, which are being built at the Atlantico Sul shipyard in the Brazilian northeast state of Pernambuco.
Habitats Project - Campos Basin Environmental Studies
Since 2007, Petrobras, along with national research institutes and industry suppliers, has been busy researching physical, chemical, geological, biological and socio-economic characteristics of the Campos Basin, a region that starts at the north end of the State of Rio de Janeiro all the way to the south of the State of Espirito Santo, encompassing an area of some 100 thousand square kilometers. The project has two main parts, one about fisheries and its socio-economic impact and the other about environmental issues, which is called the Habitat Project. The information is being transformed into a database, which will be used to support decision making concerning environmental issues, environmental management and will also be edited as a scientific publication.
New Deepwater Discoveries in Brazil
Petrobras, Brazil´s National operator hás recently disclosed new local and international O&G discoveries. The discoveries in Brazil are all in deepwater. In the Espírito Santo Basin the hydrocarbon accumulations were found in the Cretaceous reservoirs of a well known as Brigadeiro, down at 1,900 meters and located within the BM-ES-23 concession area in Block ES-M-525, 115 km off the coast of the State of Espírito Santo in southeast Brazil. This new deepwaterdiscovery at the very promising Espirito Santo Basin, was confirmed through wireline logging and fluid sampling, in t reservoirs located at around 4,200 meters.Petrobras is the operator of block BM-ES-23 (65%), which is also composed of Shell Brasil Petróleo (20%) and Inpex Petróleo Santos (15%).
Subsea Processing Systems Expanding in Brazil
The advent of reliable subsea processing has taken a considerable time to develop. For a few years now, it has been looked at as a vital solution for deepwater O&G development. Subsea processing technology was first developed to overcome challenges posed by extremely deep wells but in time it has become a proven solution in mature fields by decreasing the amount of equipment on the surface, therefore lowering operational costs and of course by boost diminishing production from mature wells, normally through re-injection of fluids, such as water, into the wells to increase the pressure inside the well. It is also an important solution in locations where harsh surface weather conditions make it extremely risky to have an anchored production plant.
Petrobras Betting on Partnerships to Develop Deepwater Equipment and Solutions
Due to the extreme demands placed on subsea equipment used in the pre-salt E&P Petrobras has been forming various partnerships with local and foreign companies to develop specially designed equipment to tackle the hazards of deepwater pre-salt development. One of the newest partnerships implemented by Petrobras, was for a feasibility study on Flexible pipes for practical oil production in pre-salt area with Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC). JOGMEC and PETROBRAS have a long history of research and development partnerships which started back in 2005, for collaboration on mutual benefit O&G exploration and production activities, HSE related matters, and R&D activities of the O&G sector.
OGX – Intensifying Discovery Appraisals and Planning on ordering 3 more FPSOs
Paulo Mendonça, CEO of OGX stated that the first quarter of 2011 was very important for the Brazilian operator. OGX has been intensifying the campaign to appraise its discoveries in the Campos basin, where 16 wells have been spud since the beginning of the year, of which 10 are appraisal wells for the accumulations Waikiki, Pipeline and Illimani (Campos Basin) and Fazenda São José (Parnaíba Basin), with the intent of converting 3C contingent resources into 2C and 1C, and thereafter into reserves. -Delivering the vital and time sensitive declaration of commerciality to ANP (National O&G regulator), related to the discoveries in Campos, Santos and Parnaíba Basins.
Major Deepwater Contract with Petrobras Spotlights Subsea 7´s Enhanced Capabilities
The $1 billion contract awarded to Subsea 7 by Brazilian national oil company Petrobras, marks a new era in Subsea 7´s history. It is the first major (in terms of contract value) contract for the company after its merger with Acergy. The contract is for development of the Guara and Lula deepwater pre-salt fields in the Santos Basin, over 300km from the coast of Rio de Janeiro, in water depth of around 2,200 meters. These plays are located in Block BM-S-9 and BM-S-11 respectively. The EPIC (Engineering, Procurement, Installation and Pre-Commisioning) project scope consists of 4 decoupled riser systems featuring, four submerged buoys each of 1…
Synthetic DYNEEMA Ropes for Deepwater MODU
With the increase in deepwater O&G exploration, the demand placed on mooring ropes for MODUs (Mobile Operating Drilling Units) has increased dramatically. Rope manufacturers have been developing products based on new materials and also adapting their manufacturing processes to accommodate new materials and more stringent requirements. In some deepwater plays mooring ropes will be going down to 2,000 or even 3,000 meters, which places massive stress on the ropes, due not only to its length and weight but also due to the action of subsea currents, ship movement caused by surface waves, currents and wind. Dutch rope manufacturer Lankhorst Ropes…
Phoenix and the Remora 6000
The Remora is specially designed ultra-deepwater ROV. It was designed and built to explore and undertake specialized work at the seabed up to four miles deep. The builder of the Remora 6000, Phoenix International, is an American marine services company experienced in designing and manufacturing unmanned subsea vehicle and also in conducting complex manned and unmanned underwater operations. Phoenix is also a highly regarded operator, when it comes to wet and dry chamber underwater welding, underwater non-destructive testing, manned diving, side-scan sonar operations, underwater tooling, submarine rescue, and engineering design and integration.
Ultra-Deepwater AUVs and ROVs show their value by finding AF 447s Fuselage
If the earlier searches for the debris had made a more intensive use of ultra-deepwater AUVs, finding the sunken fuselage, the black boxes and voice recorders may have taken considerably less than two years. However we must also consider that the total estimated search area was huge. The first idea of using submarines, just wasn´t enough with the extreme depth involved (3,900 meters). France had announced last February that it would begin the 4 phase of its search for the AF 447 debris, somewhere over 700 km from the north coast of Brazil, beyond the remote islands of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, a notorious shipwreck location. The new effort aimed to find the downed Airbus A330-200, which crashed on May 31 2009, killing all 228 passenger and crew members as it flew from Rio to Paris.