Modularisation of topsides could result in up to 40% cost savings
The first generation of floating LNG facilities and the Yamal LNG project have lessons for the industry, according to TechnipFMC’s vice-president of gas monetisation Dominique Gadelle.
While the end of the high oil-price era may have stalled investment in offshore, there are many useful lessons to be learned from the first generation of floating capacity, Mr Gadelle said in the Shipping & Floating LNG session at the LNG2019 Conference in Shanghai on 4 April.
One of the key takeaways has been demonstrating the feasibility of floating LNG. Petronas’ PFLNG Satu was the first to enter service, producing LNG from the Kanowit field offshore Malaysia in April 2017. Golar LNG’s converted Hilli Episeyo commenced LNG production in June 2018, and Shell’s Prelude FLNG project commenced initial production at the end of 2018. Several more projects are in the works.
However, Mr Gadelle noted there is scope in future projects for on-deck integration of modules, including topside/hull interfaces, to be minimised, and revenue per m2 of deck to be increased.
The Yamal LNG project has demonstrated that modularisation on a large scale enables cost and schedule certainty even in extreme locations, noted Mr Gadelle. This could have advantages for floating LNG, minimising cable pulling and other integration activities on site.
TechnipFMC is developing so-called MegaModules to be used in topsides, operationally self-standing units that can integrate construction completion and precommissioning and commissioning activities, as well as saving on supply quantities, fabrication costs and man-hours.
The company envisages having separate yards for hull construction and for topside fabrication and integration. Installation can be carried out on the quayside using skids and jacks, minimising on-vessel integration.
This maximises construction and commissioning on the quayside while minimising integration and commissioning work carried out on the hull. Mr Gadelle noted that current studies show this concept could result in a 30%-40% cost reduction.