Popeye Project: Subsea System
- P.B. Ritter (Shell Offshore Inc.) | C.G. Langner (Shell E&P Technology Co.) | G.E. Sgouros (Shell Offshore Inc.) | B.J. Saucier (Intec Engineering Inc.) | R.K. Voss (ABB Vetco Gray)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Drilling & Completion
- Publication Date
- December 1997
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 256 - 265
- 1997. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 4.5.10 Remotely Operated Vehicles, 2.1.7 Deepwater Completions Design, 4.2.4 Risers, 3 Production and Well Operations, 2 Well Completion, 4.5.7 Controls and Umbilicals, 4.3.4 Scale, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 1.7 Pressure Management, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers, 1.10 Drilling Equipment, 7.3.3 Project Management, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 1.3.2 Subsea Wellheads, 4.5 Offshore Facilities and Subsea Systems, 2.7.1 Completion Fluids, 7.2.3 Decision-making Processes
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The subsea system installed for the Shell Offshore Inc. (SOI) Popeye project represents an advance in deepwater subsea technology. It is a diverless, guidelineless, 10,000-psi cluster-manifold concept, the first of its kind. The cluster concept was selected in large part based on SOI's deepwater experience and anticipated future subsea-development needs. This paper describes how the innovative Popeye subsea system was selected, designed, tested, and successfully installed.
Field-development studies for Popeye indicated that a satellite-subsea-development scheme was the only economical alternative. The required subsea technology existed, but Popeye presented a unique combination of challenging technical requirements and marginal economic potential. SOI also recognized that those requirements (primarily high pressure, deep water, and long offset distance) would increase and continue to be challenges for its many other deepwater prospects. These considerations called into question whether the existing, traditional subsea-system designs, adapted for Popeye's technical needs, were the best solution for Popeye and the future.
A subsea-system concept used in diver depths in the North Sea called the cluster-manifold concept seemed to offer advantages for deepwater Gulf of Mexico (GOM). The cluster concept has discrete satellite subsea wells in close proximity to a common manifold, connected to the manifold with flowline and controls jumpers. However, the diverless jumper technology required for a deepwater cluster concept had not been field proven. In deep water, without the use of divers, the concept depends on the ability to interconnect components using only remote tools from a surface vessel and/or remote-operated vehicles (ROV's). It also requires accurate remote positioning and measurement of wells and structures on the sea floor.
But there were several reasons to have confidence that a diverless cluster concept was viable for Popeye: experience gained by SOI in deepwater guidelineless drilling; routine use of rapidly advancing ROV capabilities; and encouraging results of Shell research on deepwater-flowline-installation methods. A comprehensive comparison was carried out between the cluster concept and the traditional integrated template subsea system.
|File Size||5 MB||Number of Pages||10|