History was made in August 2009 when Murphy West Africa Ltd. began producing the Azurite field offshore The Democratic Republic of the Congo. Azurite uses the industry’s first Floating, Drilling, Production, Storage, and Offloading (FDPSO) vessel.
Excel Engineering (now Ramboll) teamed up with Prosafe, Doris Engineering, Nabors International, and William Jacob Management to produce the FDPSO facility for Murphy’s Azurite Development Project.
This unique development, conceptualised by Doris and operated by Murphy, combines features of a drillship and a FPSO on a single ship. It is a robust concept with potential for broader applications as the industry seeks new ways to monetise isolated fields.
The converted, VLCC tanker vessel was chartered from Prosafe and was moored in approximately 1,380m water depth, off the shore of Congo, as part of a subsea development to produce hydrocarbons from beneath the seabed.
Ramboll was subcontracted by William Jacob Management to design ten drilling modules, which became permanent fixtures to the ship. Upon completion of drilling, the drilling equipment is removable for use at other locations, utilising self-contained ship cranes. The rig modules were constructed in Batam, Indonesia.