Gazprom Neft has completed its 100th consignment of ARCO oil from its Prirazlomnaya ice-resistant stationary platform, located on the Russian Arctic Shelf. This landmark consignment was undertaken by tanker, the “Kirill Lavrov”.
The Prirazlomnaya platform is the first — and, thus far, the only — oil and gas project on the Russian Arctic Shelf. The first consignment from the Prirazlomnoye field was despatched in April 2014. Since going into operation approximately 6.6 million tonnes of oil have been shipped from the Prirazlomnaya platform.
Demand for ARCO oil, produced offshore in the Pechora Sea, is due to its particular characteristics, including its high density (approximately 906 kilogrammes per cubic metre), low coke residue, and high proportion of fractions used in lubricant production. The products obtained from deep conversion of this kind of oil have a wide range of uses — including, in particular, being used in tyres, as well as pharmaceutical and cosmetic production.
Andrey Patrushev, Deputy CEO, Offshore Project Development, Gazprom Neft, commented: “In developing the Prirazlomnoye field we are implementing a bold and ambitious project under extreme natural and climatic conditions. In successfully completing the 100th oil consignment from the Prirazlomnaya platform we have further confirmed that hydrocarbon production on the Russian Arctic Shelf is both viable and safe, and that ARCO oil has gained a strong foothold in the global market.”
The Prirazlomnoye field is the only field on the Russian Arctic Shelf at which oil production is being undertaken commercial production having begun in December 2013 The first consignments of a new Russian “Arctic Oil (ARCO)” were despatched from the platform in April 2014. Production at the Prirazlomnaya platform has already reached more than 6.6 million tonnes of oil, to date. The licence to develop this field is held by Gazpromneft-Shelf LLC, a subsidiary of Gazprom Neft.
Initially discovered in 1989, the Prirazlomnoye oilfield is located in the Pechora Sea, 60 kilometres from the shore. Recoverable reserves are in the order of 70 million tonnes. The “Prirazlomnaya” ice-resistant offshore platform was designed specifically for development of this field, and is designed for use in the most extreme environmental and climatic conditions, as well as meeting the most stringent safety requirements and withstanding maximum ice loads.
All wells at the Prirazlomnoye field are located within the platform, the base of which then acts as a buffer between the well and the open sea — which can reach depths of up to 20 metres around the field. In addition to which, all wells are specially equipped to prevent the possibility of any uncontrolled emission of oil or gas. Oil storage at the platform involves “wet sump” methodology, preventing the ingress of oxygen into storage tanks, preventing the ingress of oxygen and the creation of potentially explosive conditions.
The offloading line for the pumping of oil to tankers is equipped with an emergency shut-down system, which is activated instantaneously. Emergency icebreaking vessels will be on permanent emergency standby around the platform, equipped with the latest oil-spill recovery equipment.
A “zero-emissions” system is in operation at the Prirazlomnaya rig, with drilling fluid, bit cuttings (“drilling sludge”) and other production waste all pumped into a special re-injection well.
Prirazlomnoye photo gallery: