Selection of the optimum production system for a deepwater field requires a detailed understanding of the advantages and limitations of the various alternatives. In this paper the key features of five proven deepwater platform types – FPSOs, semisubmersibles, spars, TLPs and compliant towers – are compared. Particular emphasis is placed on the interactions between wells, risers and hull and how they vary with water depth. Large fields in ultra-deepwater are a challenging combination for which few systems are ideally suited: they are constrained in their water depth, riser count, or topside capacity. The exception is the spread-moored FPSO. In future, semi’s or other multi-column floaters (with either wet or dry trees) may also see greater application, especially where well access is important or in less benign environments.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.