For the past year, participants from the renewable and oil and gas industries have worked together in the DNV GL-led WIN WIN JIP to develop the concept of using floating wind turbines to power a water-injection system in detail, and assess its technical and commercial feasibility. Technical and operational aspects and costs have been assessed during the process.
The JIP partners include ExxonMobil, ENI Norge, Nexen Petroleum UK Ltd., Statoil, VNG Norge, PG Flow Solutions and ORE Catapult. No major challenges were identified through the JIP’s study. Analyses of system performance examining site specific cases from JIP partners have shown that WIN WIN is able to meet the operator’s key performance requirements such as injection volume targets, as well as reliability and minimized downtime.
“For the first time we can now see renewable energy as a large-scale source of power to offshore oil and gas operations,” said Remi Eriksen, Group President and CEO of DNV GL. “By using the recent developments of floating offshore wind turbines, this concept can offer a clean, reliable, and cost-effective alternative for powering water injection in offshore locations. The WIN WIN project showcases that the oil and gas industry can become a creative force in solving the world’s energy trilemma by driving development of reliable, clean and affordable technologies.”
This is a big win for both the oil and gas and for the wind power industries, added Eriksen.
The costs for wind-powered water injection have been compared with a conventional alternative where water is injected via a flow line from the host platform. While the WIN WIN technology has higher operational expenditures compared to a conventional alternative, the significantly lower capital expenditure means that it compares favorably over the long term. WIN WIN is therefore a commercially competitive alternative in a range of cases, particularly when host platform capacity is limited or injection wells are located far away.
“We are encouraged by recent advances in wind technology, particularly for niche applications such as offshore oil and gas operations,” commented Sara Ortwein, President of ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company. “Such technological advances improve the economic feasibility for wind to contribute to the overall energy supply mix.”
Hanne Wigum, Head of Renewable Technology Development in Statoil added: “Supplying clean power to oil and gas installations was part of the original idea behind Statoil’s Hywind concept. The WIN WIN concept represents an alternative source of electricity and has the potential to open up new opportunities for field development.”
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