Multiple Factors Drive Decisions Toward Wet or Dry Trees in Deepwater Projects
- Adam Wilson (JPT Special Publications Editor)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- May 2014
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 99 - 101
- 2014. Offshore Technology Conference
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- 87 since 2007
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This article, written by Special Publications Editor Adam Wilson, contains highlights of paper OTC 24517, "Deepwater Development: Wet or Dry Tree?" by D. Reid, M. Dekker, SPE, and D. Nunez, Shell, prepared for the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference Brasil, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 29-31 October. The paper has not been peer reviewed. Copyright 2013 Offshore Technology Conference. Reproduced by permission.
This paper explores the interplay between field development and lifecycle reservoir management and the selection and operation of dry- or wet-tree host systems for the development and production of deepwater oil and gas fields. Drawing on insights from recent deepwater projects, the selection criteria related to development and reservoir management are highlighted to show the advantages and limitation of the two different host concepts.
In deep water, it is common for approximately one-third of the initial capital investment to be related to the host system. Selection of the host concept is critical and is dependent on a robust understanding of the many upfront development drivers.
The host is ultimately the linchpin in the overall development system and is critical to delivering a solution that maximizes economic value during the life of the project, to providing a degree of mitigation against key reservoir and production uncertainties that are inherent in deepwater developments, and to providing flexibility to capture any potential future production upsides that have been identified in the proximal development location.
One of the more important decisions related to deepwater host selection is whether to adopt a dry- or wet-tree system. Both systems offer distinct advantages and disadvantages, depending on the context of their application. The selection of a dry- or wet-tree system should be made in the context of the overall development system evaluation.
Wet- and Dry-Tree Deepwater Host Systems
At a high level, deepwater host development has evolved into four major options, each with various degrees of flexibility in shape and design:
- Tension-leg platforms (TLPs)
- Moored semisubmersible platforms
- Spar platform concepts (conventional, truss, and single-column floater)
- Floating production, storage, and offload (FPSO) vessels
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