With the ever-increasing demand of energy in the country, the Indian exploration and production is now compelled to move into deepwater frontiers. The country’s energy reserve is getting exhausted with drying shallow water assets and the mainland is already overwhelmed with the pressure of sustaining the world’s second largest population. Therefore, “the upstream oil and gas fraternity of the country” has to now enter “less explored” Indian deepwater block which has already started with the launch of the NELP block by the government.
Although, the world has moved into deepwater long back, the Indian industry is still developing the ways and means to tackle the challenges involved in deep water. This paper presents the insights into design and installation of deepwater pipelines along with case study of Middle East to India Deepwater Pipeline (MEIDP) of M/s SAGE, which shall be laid at a maximum water depth of 3450 m.
This paper broadly elucidates the challenges in designing the deepwater pipelines such as requirement of thick-walled line pipes to sustain collapse due to external over-pressure and tensile stresses generated due to installation forces, pipeline route selection and optimization, geo-hazard assessment & mitigation, design against fault line crossings/ seismic design, free span, repair systems, seabed intervention etc. It also covers the additional manufacturing & testing requirements including tighter tolerances for line pipes suitable for deepwater installations. It also highlights the deepwater installation capabilities of Pipe lay Barges for the laying of pipeline in the deepwater to ultra-deep waters along with new evolving testing and commissioning philosophies.
This paper intends to bring awareness among the “oil and gas fraternity” regarding challenges involved in deep water pipelines with respect to design, installation etc.