BAAR, Switzerland – Saipem’s Castoro Sei has completed laying the 105-km (65-mi) long offshore section of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) across the Adriatic Sea.
TAP is an 878-km (545-mi) long pipeline system that will transport gas from the Shah Deniz II field in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea to southern Europe.
It connects with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border in Kipoi, then traverses Greece and Albania to the Adriatic Sea before making final landfall in southern Italy.
In mid-January activities started with pipes being welded and tested on board the Castoro Sei, then laid on the seafloor in a continuous stretch, from the Italian shore toward Albania. The vessel laid on average 1.2 km (0.75 mi) of pipes per day, reaching a peak of 2.8 km (1.74 mi) in a single day.
Other features of the offshore campaign were the above-water-tie-in with the onshore infrastructure in Albanian waters, and hydrotesting of the system to ensure readiness for operation.
The completed offshore section comprises around 9,000 36-in. pipes, weighing in total around 100,000 metric tons (110,231 tons), with 25 km (15.5 mi) of the line in Italian territorial waters, 43 km (26.7 mi) in international waters, and 37 km (23 mi) in Albanian territorial waters.
At its deepest the pipeline is 810 m (2,657 ft) subsea.
First gas deliveries to Europe via TAP should start by the end of 2020. The partners are BP (20%), SOCAR (20%), Snam (20%), Fluxys (19%), Enagás (16%), and Axpo (5%).