Delmar Systems sets first gravity installed vertical load anchor in Gulf

Delmar Systems Inc. successfully embedded the Gulf of Mexico’s first gravity-installed vertical load anchor (VLA) for inclusion in the mooring system for a deepwater semisubmersible drilling unit at work in the Garden Banks area.

Mar 1st, 2008
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Delmar Systems Inc. successfully embedded the Gulf of Mexico’s first gravity-installed vertical load anchor (VLA) for inclusion in the mooring system for a deepwater semisubmersible drilling unit at work in the Garden Banks area.

According to company officials, the patented OMNI-Max anchor was deployed from an anchor-handling tug/supply vessel (AHTS), pull-tested, and then abandoned for a short time in the preset configuration to await arrival of the rig. Once the rig arrived, the anchor line was connected to the rig using Delmar’s patented subsea mooring connector, which joined the preset mooring line to the rig’s self-contained mooring components.


Delmar Systems recently installed the first OMNI-Max vertical load anchor in the Gulf of Mexico.
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The OMNI-Max anchor system was joined with the rig’s seven other self-contained/deployed conventional drag embedment anchors with attached mooring lines.

According to Brady Como, Delmar executive vice president, the OMNI-Max offers benefits to mooring system design by reducing risk to subsea infrastructure in the event of station keeping damage or failure.

The anchor is capable of being loaded in any direction around its axis, says Como, adding that under extreme loading and uplift angles, the anchor penetrates deeper into the sea bottom to gain holding capacity.

“This technology is an industry ‘first’ that may allow damaged moorings to survive longer in the event of multiple line failure,” he says, “since the load angle can change without the capacity of the foundation being affected adversely.”

Connectors for first FPDSO

Delmar also was awarded a contract to supply its patented subsea connectors for the world’s first FPDSO (floating production, drilling, storage, and offloading) vessel for Murphy West Africa’s Azurite project off the Republic of the Congo. The contract was let by Prosafe, the company responsible for conversion and installation of the FPDSO vessel.

The FPDSO will be anchored in a water depth of 4,593 ft (1,400 m) and is scheduled for installation in late 2008.

The company’s connector technology is used with mobile drilling units and permanent mooring installations that allow single-vessel deployment of anchors and mooring lines. According to Como, the subsea connector provides for easy connect/disconnect capability using a standard ROV.

“This project marks the seventh permanent installation to use Delmar subsea connectors around the world,” he said, adding that it is the first mooring connector to receive classification society approval for use in permanent mooring systems.

Delmar Systems, with corporate offices in Broussard, Louisiana, operates an engineering and sales office in Houston, and its shore base at Port Fourchon. The company provides engineering, installation and mooring equipment services, celebrating 40 years of servicing the offshore oil and gas industry.

Fourchon crane

At the Port Fourchon facility, which operates 24/7, the company’s main crane is a 4600 Manitowoc Ringer Crane rated at 650 tons (590 metric ton) with a 330-ft (100-m) boom length, Como says. It is among the largest cranes at the port, and is installed atop a limestone pad near the dockside bulkhead.


The Delmar Systems shore base at Port Fourchon boasts a 650-ton (590-metric ton) revolving crane to load and unload mooring systems and components.
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“The crane greatly enhances Delmar’s ability to support the requirements for deepwater GoM operations,” he says. “The extended boom reach, along with 600 ft (183 m) of dockside access, permits multiple vessel load-outs without repositioning either the vessel or the crane.”

He adds that the facility has additional lifting capacity, including a 150-ton (136-metric ton) crawler crane, two 52,000-lb (23,587-kg) heavy lift forklifts, and a state-of-the-art dockside handling system for easy loading and offloading of anchor chain.

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