OSLO -- Gas exports from the Kvitebjørn field in the North Sea started today, after successful repairs to the rich gas pipeline between the platform and the Kollsnes processing plant near Bergen.
The repair work has gone according to plan and the subsequent testing has shown that the pipeline is now ready for use, according to StatoilHydro. The Visund field, which uses the same pipeline, has also resumed gas exports.
Kvitebjørn has been shutdown since Aug. 20, 2008, when a gas leak was discovered during a routine inspection of the pipeline.
The leak arose in the part of the pipeline that was damaged by a ship's anchor in 2007. The fracture spot lies at a depth of 210 m (689 ft), about 10 km (6.2 mi) from the platform.
The pipeline was repaired by inserting a new section of pipe in the damaged area and connecting it to the pipeline with the help of two Morgrip pipe connectors which seal the coupling.