The demand for natural gas from offshore fields is continuously increasing. Especially future production from Arctic waters comes into focus in context with global warming effects leading to the development of a dedicated technology. Relevant approaches work with floating turret moored production terminals (FLNG) receiving gas via flexible risers from subsea or onshore fields. These terminals provide on-board gas treatment and liquefaction facilities as well as huge storage capabilities for LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas), LPG (Liquefied Petrol Gases) and condensate. Products are transferred to periodically operating shuttle tankers for onshore supply reducing the need for local onshore processing plants providing increased production flexibility (future movability or adaptation of capacity). Nevertheless, in case of harsh environmental conditions or ice coverage the offshore transfer of cryogenic liquids between the terminal and the tankers becomes a major challenge. In the framework of the joint research project MPLS20 ([1]), an innovative offshore mooring and cargo transfer system has been developed and analyzed. MPLS20 is developed by the project partners Nexans ([2]) and Brugg ([3]), leading manufacturers of vacuum insulated, flexible cryogenic transfer pipes, IMPaC ([4]), an innovative engineering company that has been involved in many projects for the international oil and gas industry for more than 25 years and the Technical University (TU) Berlin, Department of Land- and Sea Transportation Systems (NAOE, [5]), with great expertise in numerical analyses and model tests. The overall system is based on IMPaC’s patented and certified offshore ‘Mooring Bay’ concept allowing mooring of the vessels in tandem configuration and simultaneous handling and operation of up to six flexible transfer pipes in full aerial mode. The concept is outlined to operate with flexible transfer lines with 16-inch inner diameter like the newly designed and certified corrugated pipes from Nexans and Brugg. The mooring concept and its major subsystems have proven their operability by means of extensive numerical analysis, model tests and a professional ship handling simulator resulting in an overall transfer solution suitable to be used especially under Arctic conditions like addressed by the EU joint research project ACCESS ( The paper introduces the new offshore LNG transfer system and focuses especially on its safe and reliable operability in the Arctic — with ice coverage as well as in open water conditions.

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