From the Editor, 5/6 2008

Published Jun 2, 2008
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SOGM 5/6 2008

Look to Bergen
We are once again privileged to be involved with the Underwater Technology Conference (UTC), the 15th since the organisers – the Underwater Technology Foundation (UTF) – arranged the first in 1980. UTF was initiated during the pioneering period of the Norwegian petroleum era and its members include major companies related to the oil industry together with classification, research and finance institutions in the Bergen area. As has become the tradition, UTC will be held at Greig Hall – one of the city’s most noticeable landmarks.

UTC participants can expect an exciting conference, including an in-depth look at operational status and experiences, field-proven technology, new developments as well as the challenges and possibilities involved with increasing productivity and recovery – all from the subsea perspective.

As part of your UTC experience, we begin this issue with an introduction to the heart of Bergen’s subsea efforts – the Norwegian Centre of Expertise (NCE) Subsea, which co-ordinates efforts of the subsea cluster in the Bergen region, working with new strategies to improve its

development opportunities.

After NCE Subsea sets the stage for subsea Bergen, we include information from a number of companies that will participate in this year’s UTC.

The subsea theme continues with Vector International, which considers connection technologies for subsea pipeline and flowline tie-ins, christmas tree and manifold connections, and more. Prospect discusses the key considerations in the design of structures resting on the seabed, especially prevention of toppling or movement.

Our Russia update focuses on Shtokman – the mother of all subsea adventures – as we examine the first contracts awarded by the Shtokman Development Company steering committee – Gazprom, Total and StatoilHydro – which hint at the technologies that will be used on the Barents Sea’s giant gas field. But, uncertainty hangs over questions about the supply chain, its composition and its effects on project costs.

We also look at floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) systems in this issue. As Acergy relates, FPSOs have been deployed extensively in relatively shallow water developments in the Mediterranean, the North Sea, the Far East and Australia. But now, FPSOs have been adapted to suit large deepwater fields in key markets such as West Africa and Brazil, and Acergy tells us of the lessons they’ve learned from towing and installing FPSOs in deepwater.

Once again, we are fortunate to have energy industry analysts Douglas-Westwood contributing excerpts from the recently published The World Floating Production Market Report 2008-12. The authors provide us with some of the thinking behind their views concerning what will undoubtedly be substantial growth for the sector floating production from the present to 2012.

We also have a drilling report from EnergyFiles, which primarily examines the ever increasing number of exploratory wells drilled each year. The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has announced the opening of the expanded Awards in Predefined Areas (APA) 2008, so we certainly expect to see more exploratory drilling in local waters.

And these are only some of the topics we take up in this issue. Hopefully, we have something of interest for nearly everyone working in the industry.

Finally, we wish all UTC participants and delegates a excellent conference experience. We’re looking forward to seeing you there.

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