Abstract

The paper discusses the application of self-elevating platforms (jack-up rigs) to offshore production.

Particular emphasis is placed on South East Asia, where marginal field Particular emphasis is placed on South East Asia, where marginal field development of short life fields in relatively shallow water depth is a prime consideration. prime consideration. Cost comparison between a jack-up rig and a fixed platform are discussed using an actual estimate of installed costs for a specific field development. The technical features and limitations of the jack-up rig are also dealt with.

Introduction

Over the past few years much time and space has been given over to discussion of marginal oil and gas fields, many of which are recent discoveries, and other known fields which had been regarded as economically unviable.

There are a number of marginal offshore oilfield discoveries, in South East Asia which, like others, elsewhere in the world, may be unable to justify installation of fixed production platforms. It is therefore the task of engineering evaluation to find methods by which these prospects may be economically developed.

When production from an offshore field may be only marginally profitable, efforts must be made to shorten the duration of field development and to allow production to begin as early as possible. This will enhance the economic feasibility of the prospect, because early production means early income, and by minimising the offshore work involved, the high costs of offshore hook-ups and commissioning may be reduced.

In water depths of less than 100 metres, the conventional approach to development of hydrocarbon reserves has tended to be utilisation of fixed steel jackets to support production equipment. Although reliable, utilisation of these fixed platforms often involves a lengthy offshore hook-up schedule for the lifting and installation of deck and topsides facilities, which are usually semi integrated or modular. This, in additional to jacket installation and platform commissioning activities, results in increased costs, and possible overspending of the development budget.

Various development alternatives are feasible for these small, short life fields, namely different-forms of floating or early production systems, such as tanker conversions as well as self-elevating (jack-up) production units.

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