Statoil has decided to postpone resuming production at the Njord field in the Norwegian Sea after completing a turnaround. Reinforcements are needed to the platform structure before production can resume.
Extensive analysis and inspection work carried out during the shutdown this summer has revealed the need for reinforcements to a number of beams in the platform structure before production can be resumed. It is anticipated that the work may need to continue towards the summer of 2014.
Production at Njord was stopped on July 27 and the platform was then emptied of oil and gas. At the time the plan was to resume production in mid-September.
In connection with the extensive reinforcement work carried out on the deck framing on the Njord A platform in the summer of 2012, small deformations were discovered in certain beams and other structural elements. Some of the damage was reinforced and other deformations were so limited that no remedial work was considered necessary.
As a continuation of this work, and as part of the company’s continuous focus on structural integrity, this year Statoil has carried out an extensive analysis and inspection programme to evaluate the status of the entire platform construction. The purpose of these reanalyses and inspections has been to verify the platform’s strength in various weather and load conditions.
The inspections have not disclosed new damage, but the reanalyses show that some of the deck’s structures are too heavily loaded and that reinforcements are necessary before production and drilling can resume.
“Planning of the task has begun. At this stage it is difficult to estimate the extent of the reinforcements needed, but it already seems clear that we will have to allow for this work to take until the summer of 2014,” says Njord production director, Arve Rennemo.
Njord has been in production since 1997, and the planned reinforcements – together with those already carried out – will contribute to upgrading the installation for more years in production.
“There must never be any doubt that it is safe to work on Statoil’s installations. To be on the safe side, we have therefore decided to postpone start-up until the necessary reinforcements have been completed,” says Rennemo.