HOUSTON – Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) announced today that two subsea electrical submersible pumping (ESP) systems have been brought on line at the Cascade field, operated by Petrobras America Inc. in the Lower Tertiary trend of the Gulf of Mexico.
The subsea boosting system is in 8,200 ft (2,499 m) of water – the deepest application of this production technology in the Gulf of Mexico. The system employs two ESP systems – operating hydraulically in series, but electrically in parallel—housed in a replaceable cartridge placed on the seafloor. This design does not require a rig for intervention, making any maintenance or changeout requirements over the life of the field more economic.
The startup of the ESP system is the culmination of six years of technology design, development, fabrication, and testing work to meet the pressure, flow range, and horsepower requirements of the project. The system is designed to a working pressure of 12,500 psi, flow rates from 3,000 to 20,000 barrels per day, and 1.3MW, and includes comprehensive ESP monitoring systems.
“This project is another example of how ESP systems can be leveraged as the lowest total-cost-of-ownership solution to boost production from deepwater and ultradeepwater fields,” said Wade Welborn, vice president of artificial lift for Baker Hughes.
“Baker Hughes has been designing innovative technology solutions for subsea applications for over 10 years,” added Peter Lawson, Baker Hughes director of artificial lift technology. “We have successfully installed in-well and seabed ESP boosting systems offshore Brazil, in the Gulf of Mexico, in Asia Pacific, and in the North Sea. This latest successful deployment of subsea ESP systems continues to increase the industry’s confidence in ESP technology as a critical part of subsea production systems.”
Baker Hughes andAker Solutions recently announced the Subsea Production Alliance to develop integrated in-well and subsea production solutions to boost output, increase recovery rates and reduce costs at subsea fields. Baker Hughes ESP technology will be a critical part of the alliance solutions, which are aimed at improving recovery rates.