Strengths and Weaknesses in the HP/HT Design Verification Process within Gulf of Mexico
- Harish Patel (ABS) | Jing Ji (ABS) | Satya Meruva (ABS) | Jessie Lin (ABS)
- Document ID
- Offshore Technology Conference
- Offshore Technology Conference, 1-4 May, Houston, Texas, USA
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2017. Offshore Technology Conference
- 1.6 Drilling Operations, 7 Management and Information, 7.2 Risk Management and Decision-Making, 7.2.1 Risk, Uncertainty and Risk Assessment
- Independent Third Party (I3P), HPHT, Drilling Technology, Verification and Validation, Offshore Drilling
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Technology advancements applied to the design of high-pressure, high-temperature (HP/HT) equipment for offshore drilling and production during recent years has increased. Now being manufactured, installed and operated on producing wells in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), this HP/HT equipment has enabled the development of fields that were previously considered to be unviable. Regulations require an independent third party (I3P) verification process to be conducted on HP/HT equipment. The verification process is to assure conformance with applicable industry codes and standards. The mandated verification and validation raises some questions: What can be learned by these processes? Are there opportunities for design improvements in any of the HP/HT equipment?
The industry is learning how to apply advanced analysis methods which are based on the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Section VIII, Division 3 methods for pressure vessels. These advanced methods require detailed equipment design verification. Regulatory officials and operators alike need assurance that the technology qualification process addresses all of the appropriate failure modes. Likewise, are hazards associated with these HP/HT operations fully identified and mitigated by appropriate procedures? Are the design analyses performed accurate, complete, and do they provide a high degree of confidence for each stakeholder?
In the text of this paper, details on how the appropriate verification process is being applied to each of the various HP/HT equipment systems are discussed. The paper will detail a list of common issues that have arisen, and describe how each has been addressed. The actions being taken to assist the offshore industry with a verification process to fully comply with the intent of several applicable design codes are addressed. It will also show how the identified risks are being addressed during verification. These descriptions will assist in creating focused discussions with subsequent improvements for HP/HT environments and new, advanced technology for future HP/HT equipment being applied.
The views expressed in this paper are of the authors in their individual capacities and do not reflect the positions or opinions of the authors' employer – American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).
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