Polarled pipeline installation under way from Norwegian Sea

The Solitaire pipe-laying vessel has started Stage 1 of the Statoil ASA-operated Polarled installation project connecting Aasta Hansteen field in the Norwegian Sea to Nyhamna in western Norway.

The gas pipeline is now connected to the Nyhamna processing plant, which Royal Dutch Shell PLC will prepare for gas reception.

The 482-km, 70 million standard cu m/day pipeline will be laid in up to 1,265 m of water, marking the first time a 36-in. OD gas pipeline has been installed at such depths, Statoil says, adding that Polarled is the first pipeline to take Norwegian gas infrastructure across the Arctic Circle.

Once the pipeline is laid, Statoil will install an end manifold with connection for Aasta Hansteen and future fields. Polarled will feature six T-joints. Plans for the field and pipeline were submitted in January 2013 (OGJ Online, Jan. 8, 2013).

The Polarled pipe-laying operation is scheduled to be completed by the end of August. Nyhamna will be ready to receive Aasta Hansteen gas in 2017. When the pipeline comes on stream, Gassco will operate the pipeline and Nyhamna plant.

Statoil says Aasta Hansteen is one of the largest and most complex industrial projects in Europe, and the first deepwater project in the Norwegian Sea.

The Snefrid Nord discovery made by the company this month upped the field’s resources base by 31-57 million boe recoverable (OGJ Online, Mar. 18, 2015). The discovery will be evaluated for future tie-in to Aasta Hansteen infrastructure.

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