TWI consultants have provided an Industrial Member company with an asset life-extension strategy, to enable continued profitable production from an offshore installation running beyond its original design life.
Need for review
Our client, a major multinational operator in the North Sea region, has recently acquired full operational responsibility of several offshore assets, which date back to the 1970s and are now running close to their design life. Advanced reservoir management and drilling technologies are allowing the client to continue to operate and invest in these old assets with ambitious plans for profitable production for many years to come.
The fact that the assets are old is not the only challenge for management. Another major challenge is that each asset was inherited from a different operator with different procedures for maintenance and inspection. As part of the KP4 programme on ageing and life extension, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reviewed the client's regimes for risk-based inspection (RBI) and ageing management.
The Member company asked TWI to provide expert and independent consultancy on how to develop the RBI regime and to set up a strategy for management of ageing assets. Consultants from TWI engaged with key engineers and senior management staff through several site visits to the client's offices.
The TWI team worked interactively and responded to the client's comments and ideas through the duration of the project.
RBI and management of ageing roadmap
The project identified both the strengths and shortcomings of existing arrangements and practices for RBI. Integration of the acquired assets into a single RBI planning system involved reviewing the methods used for evaluating failure probability and the definitions of ratings for the consequence of leakage. Some opportunities were found to rationalise the inspection regime.
The team produced a roadmap for the RBI regime with recommendations on:
- responsibilities, management and organisation
- processes and procedures
- software and data management.
The processes section focused on:
- a systematic approach to condition scoring
- trending of degradation and remnant life assessment leading to global risk profiling
- prediction, strategic reviews and replacement or remediation planning.
TWI experts recommended stronger link with the Field Development Plan over different timescales. This would provide a basis to set inspection objectives and policy for continued economic operations up to end of life.
Setting an ageing and life extension strategy, TWI advised a programme of integrity management activities to manage the longer term effects of ageing and enable safe and reliable life extension of the infrastructure until the economic exhaustion of the fields. The aim of the strategy is to enhance knowledge of current asset condition and ageing trends, to predict remnant life and the changing risk profile, and to identify targeted campaigns and integrity management priorities.
The TWI report was well received by the client who acted on many of the recommendations.
For further information please contact us, or visit: www.twi-global.com/technologies/ndt/risk-and-reliability-engineering