LUMUT, July 4 (Bernama) -- ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Malaysia Inc (EMEPMI), a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation, together with Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd have successfully completed the construction and loadout of its platform jacket for the first large-scale Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) project in the region.
The eight-legged jacket -- a tall, steel structure that rises up from the ocean to support a surface deck -- is now en route to be installed at the Tapis field, located about 200km offshore Terengganu.
"The 5,500-tonne jacket is the substructure for the main central processing facility of the EOR project. Built in Lumut, itâ€™s the heaviest jacket that we have installed in Malaysia," Project Executive Douglas C. Smith told Bernama in an exclusive interview.
Under the Production Sharing Contract for Tapis, Petronas Carigali and ExxonMobil each has a 50 per cent stake.
Smith said the jacket, extending 70 metres upward from the sea floor, was fully fabricated in Malaysia by SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd, who was awarded the contract in January 2012.
It will support an estimated 18,000-metric tonne integrated deck with space for gas compression, water treatment and injection facilities, production-processing equipment, utilities systems and living quarters for 145 personnel.
Construction of the jacket began in April 2012 and completed in March 2013.
"We're not only proud of the achievement but also proud of how we achieved it. The structure was built with exceptional safety results without a lost-time incident despite the significant workforce and work hours required," Smith said.
He added it took more than 800,000 work hours to complete, involving more than 600 workers during peak construction activity.
EMEPMI worked exclusively with Malaysian fabrication contractors and firms for the EOR project thus contributing to building local capability and bringing new technologies into the country, he added.
Co-venturers ExxonMobil and PETRONAS have committed RM10 billion for major EOR project activities, rejuvenation of facilities and further development and drilling activities at Tapis and six other fields to ensure reliable and sustainable energy supplies for Malaysia.
The mega project is one of several oil and gas investments announced under Malaysia's Economic Transformation Programme in 2011.
The Tapis EOR project will be a historic milestone for both EMEPMI and PETRONAS Carigali Sdn Bhd as it is not only Malaysiaâ€™s first large-scale EOR project, but also one of the largest offshore enhanced oil recovery projects in Southeast Asia.
Since production from the Tapis field began in 1978, approximately 400 million barrels of oil have been produced.
The newly initiated enhanced recovery techniques using WAG (water alternating gas) injection is expected to improve oil recovery from the field for at least another 30 years.
Meanwhile Petronasâ€™ Head of EOR Programme Dr. Nasir Darman said EOR would bring new life to old fields.
He added the effort is in line with the focus on the oil, gas and energy sector as a major contributor to the nationâ€™s economy.
Nasir said currently Malaysia has a dozen mature fields targeted for EOR, and the Tapis field showcases to the world that the country has offshore EOR capability, technology and knowledge.
â€œThis is our specialty and we are one step ahead of our competitors. Therefore this milestone is important as it places us one step closer towards our ambition of establishing Malaysia as a hub for EOR,â€ he said.