The Malampaya field development comprises subsea wells in 820 metres water-depth producing via a subsea manifold and two 16 inch diameter inconel clad flowlines to a shallow water platform 30 km distant. Condensate is removed on the platform and the dry gas is then transported via a 504 km long 24 inch export pipeline to an onshore gas plant at Tabangao (Batangas, Luzon Island) for extraction of H2S. The condensate is stored in the platform from CGS caisson prior to export via a short 3 km long 24 inch diameter pipeline and CALM buoy (Fig. 1).

A digital process automation system with FOUNDATION? Fieldbus devices is used to support the Malampaya project goals of high availability, precise control, and predictive maintenance on minimum intervention. Given the national importance of Malampaya, the facilities must be able to produce gas virtually all year round without interruption of supply. Consequently, the Process Automation System (PAS) target availability was set at 99.98%. In order to achieve the high availability and to support the minimum manning concept, the time between planned major maintenance shutdowns is set at five years. These stringent requirements motivated the use of Foundation Fieldbus as the technology for the Process Automation System (PAS) both offshore and onshore, since Foundation Fieldbus technology offers better measurement, more robust process control and remote diagnostics for field devices, The project requirements pushed the envelope of the existing host system functionality and an extensive development programme was jointly agreed with the system supplier in order to meet the project requirements.

This paper will address the experience gained in applying Foundation Fieldbus in the execution of the Malampaya Development and provide some pointers for future Projects wishing to apply this technology on a similar scale.


The selection, nearly four years ago, of FOUNDATION? Fieldbus for the control communications for the Malampaya Project was recognised at the time as providing significant technical challenges to the engineers and designers of Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. (SPEX) and their contractors. The benefits to be gained however were seen to be worthy of the challenge and Foundation Fieldbus technology was therefore selected for the Malampaya Project.

The Malampaya offshore platform accommodates an installation control center, which is intended to have the minimum of manning during the day and normally remain unattended at night, allowing platform personnel to perform combined roles of maintenance and operations assistance, as necessary.

The onshore gas plant (OGP) and the offshore platform Process Automation System (PAS) are connected via a 512 kb/sec satellite link, forming a wide area network (WAN) to share data (Fig. 2). The automation system at the OGP is capable of monitoring, control, and operational managementof all essential functions, both offshore and onshore. In addition to its measurement, control, display, and alarm capabilities, the PAS supports the full functionality of an asset management system, enabling the remote instrument calibration, diagnostics, and troubleshooting possible with FOUNDATION Fieldbus devices.

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