Subsea Tieback Forum and Exhibition returning to San Antonio

Jan. 31, 2014
A spate of global subsea tieback developments around the world in recent years will provide ample fodder for discussion at this year’s Subsea Tieback Forum and Exhibition in San Antonio.

Offshore staff

SAN ANTONIO – A spate of global subsea tieback developments around the world in recent years will provide ample fodder for discussion at this year’s Subsea Tieback Forum and Exhibition in San Antonio.

The 2014 PennWell Corp. event, now in its 14th year, takes place March 4-6 at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. More than 200 exhibiting companies and as many as 2,600 registrants are expected to attend.

Following the opening night exhibit hall reception on the evening of the 4th, the conference gets underway Wednesday with opening remarks by the 2014 conference chairman Jon Sonka, of ExxonMobil. Two speakers from that company’s Deepwater Projects division will pick up the theme of this year’s conference, “It All Ties Back to Here,” for the keynote address and scene-setting presentation. The first will be delivered by ExxonMobil vice president Clay Vaughn, followed by Marilyn Tears, senior project manager for the deepwater Julia development.

The first conference session, Flowlines, Risers, Umbilicals, begins with a detailed walk through the concept selection process and development of LLOG’s Mandy tieback in the Gulf of Mexico. BHP Billiton will discuss the innovative subsea pig launcher created for the Macedon gas project in Western Australia. And Chevron will describe the challenges and lessons learned in several long tieback pipeline projects.

The afternoon sessions kick off with talks about new technology, including an innovative use of established installation methods at Petrobras’ Papa-Terra field. Total will discuss the electrical heat trace system employed at the Islay tieback, and offer an assessment of how the technology has performed more than a year after installation. ExxonMobil will discuss an internal study laying out the challenges and possible solutions for tiebacks in sub-arctic regions.

Wednesday’s program closes with a panel discussion on the challenges of high pressure and high temperature developments, with a focus on the Gulf of Mexico. On hand will be representatives from ExxonMobil, Shell, BP, and Anadarko, along with service companies FMC Technologies and OneSubsea.

Subsea processing tops the agenda Thursday. Statoil will offer details of the qualification and operation of the two seabed water injection pumps employed at the Tyrihans field offshore Norway. ExxonMobil will discuss hydrate mitigation strategies in a production system with a long “dead leg” segment in a flowline. And Total offers a look back at two years of operation of the Pazflor subsea separation system.

The morning continues with presentations concerning Inspection, maintenance, and repair. Oceaneering will discuss blockages in flowlines and control lines in mature deepwater projects, and how they can be remediated. Shell will deliver a presentation on its light vessel intervention strategies in Brazil. And BP offers details of an operation at Thunder Horse that used new installation tooling to allow holdback and recovery of a flexible water injection riser after the removal of the associated riser PLET.

The conference agenda wraps up with lessons learned at three significant projects. Hess will outline the diverless intervention campaign that replaced a long section of flexible pipe at the Ceiba field in Equatorial Guinea. BHP Billiton will return to the Macedon project, this time to offer lessons learned during the complex installation of umbilicals. ExxonMobil closes the program with a discussion of the harsh environment drilling challenges at the Hibernia Southern Extension project offshore Newfoundland.

Throughout the event, attendees will have the opportunity to meet and greet colleagues on the exhibition floor, learn about new products and services, and to register for the annual Hog Heaven prize, a 2014 Harley Davidson motorcycle. Other associated events are the Subsea Tieback Foundation golf tournament, on Monday, March 3, and a sporting clays tournament the following day that benefits the same organization. As it has in recent years, the Subsea Tieback Forum and Exhibition will be preceded by a one-day seminar on the key elements of subsea tiebacks conducted by the Society for Underwater Technology. This year’s workshop, which grants professional development credits to engineers, will be held Tuesday, March 4.

For more information on the 2014 Subsea Tieback Forum and Exhibition, visit