STAVANGER, Norway – Statoil plans to keep production going at the Norne field complex in the Norwegian Sea until 2030.
When the facilities (an FPSO and five subsea templates) came onstream in November 1997, they were expected to cease operating in 2014. However, a series of maintenance measures and add-ons mean that the Norne floater remains in good shape and new discoveries in the area continue to be phased in as subsea tiebacks.
Today production flows from 15 subsea templates. Across the Norne license 26 exploration wells have been drilled, with discoveries on the Stær, Svale, Dompap, and Fossekall fields.
The last subsea template to be installed was onSkuld in 2013. In addition, the Alve field and the Eni-operated Marulk field have been tied in to the Norne FPSO.
So far Norne and its satellites have produced around 700 MMboe. The recovery factor for the main Norne field today is 56.5%.
Norne operations vice president Kristin Westvik said: “We now aim to increase the recovery factor to 60%. The remaining resources in the Norne area may total as much as 300 MMboe – the equivalent of anAasta Hansteen field.”
Last year Statoil, Polarkonsult in Harstad, and Aker Solutions in Tromsø conducted studies to clarify the technical condition of the hull of theNorne FPSO, to determine whether a yard stay might be needed in 2018 in order to extend its technical life to 2030.
“The studies conclude that the hull structure is solid and that the life can most likely be extended to 2036,” Westvik said. “We can thus make the necessary modifications at Norne in order to extend the productive life without bringing the FPSO ashore for an extensive period. This allows us time to thoroughly plan the road ahead for Norne 2030.”
The focus now is on progressing maintenance work to sustain the hull’s technical condition. In 2017, Statoil plans to initiate a project in 2017 detailing the scope and time of investments, and it will also apply to extend Norne’s technical life by 2021.