Offshore Structures—Past, Present, and Futureby Lyle Finn, Exxon Production Research Co, Houston, United States,
Abstract: A review of the evolution of offshore platforms concludes that the process is ongoing. New configurations continue to emerge and the range of applicability continues to expand. Today's shallow water platforms are often minimal structures that take advantage of existing infrastructure. The economic limit of deepwater fixed base structures has been reached. A few compliant structures and moored vessels have been used to produce deepwater reservoirs. Many of today's deepwater prospects have marginal economics if developed using existing deepwater production concepts. Less expensive development scenarios are needed for many deepwater prospects to be economical. One proposed approach employs an area-wide development concept with a central host platform servicing satellite facilities on adjacent fields. Another scheme uses a staged development scenario wherein a few wells are produced initially so that much of the risk associated with the uncertainty of the reservoir can be eliminated.
Subject Headings: Underwater structures | Offshore platforms | Economic factors | Shallow water | Reservoirs | Existing buildings | Infrastructure
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