This paper describes the operational history for the Ceiba Field. The FPSO vessel and process equipment is detailed together with external support required for servicing the facility and exporting crude oil. Areas of particular interest including operational problems and the related solutions are also detailed.


The Ceiba field, offshore Equatorial Guinea, West Africa was discovered in October 1999. The water depth at the field is approximately 700m. Development of the prospect started immediately leading ultimately to fist oil being produced from four subsea wells tied back to an FPSO approximately 5 miles distant. Hydrocarbons were first received on the FPSO Sendje Berge on November 22nd, 2000, fourteen months after discovery. To achieve this difficult task many engineering judgements were made with a view to maintaining flexibility of the surface and subsea systems in the future. The following paper describes the operational history together with the steps that were taken prior to production to maximize production uptime.

The field to this point has been developed in two phases. The first phase is namely "Phase 1" which includes wells Ceiba 1, Ceiba 2, Ceiba 3, Ceiba 4 and Ceiba 7. The second phase "Phase 1A" includes additional production and water injection wells. Part of the Phase 1A development inclided changing out the existing FPSO for an upgraded FPSO.

Facility Description

The FPSO Sendje Berge is a VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) taken from the Bergesen shipping fleet and converted to an FPSO by adding process facilities and modifying the ships systems. The FPSO was moored in position using twelve pre-installed anchors. Production from subsea wells was routed to the FPSO from the wells via 8" flowlines and flexible risers to compensate for vessel motion.

Production history from the field aided in the specification and construction of a modified vessel (FPSO Sendje Ceiba) and ultimately the replacement of the Sendje Berge with the Sendje Ceiba.

Production Statistics

Ceiba first oil was on November 22, 2000. Since first oil, up until January 12, 2002 when the Sendje Berge was changed out for the Sendje Ceiba, 13,014,182 barrels of oil have been produced and exported. Nineteen export operations were conducted using a bow to bow transfer method. All produced gas that is not used as fuel gas is flared. Produced water is treated on board to reduce hydrocarbon content and insure that environmental criteria are met before being discharged overboard.

The average facilities uptime for the 14 months that the Sendje Berge was producing was 98.73%.

Bergesen Offshore provided the marine crew on board the Sendje Berge. The crew is responsible for maintaining the ship's facilities including steam used for crude heating, generation of electrical power and exporting operations. Approximately sixty people are regularly stationed on the Sendje Berge to provide this support. ABB Offshore provided the personnel to support the process facilities, a total of 10 make up the compliment of production crew.

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