Reliance D6 gasfield development gathers momentum

Vol 11, PW 20 (21 Feb 08) Exploration & Production

Work is on at a brisk pace offshore eastern India to bring onto production later this year the Dhirubhai-1 and Dhirubhai-3 gasfields at deepwater block KG-DWN-98/3 (D6) operated by Mukesh Ambani-controlled Reliance.

At the offshore gas-receiving terminal at Gadimoga village in Andhra Pradesh, “virtually all civil construction work is completed,â€‌ says a source, and installation of equipment is underway. Construction of the jetty, helipad, radio tower, power plant is likewise proceeding apace, as is offshore installation work.

An industry source tells us the topsides of the offshore platform were loaded on to a barge in the Jebel Ali yard in Dubai belonging to J. Ray McDermott on February 3 and sent across to D6.

“The journey is expected to take at least three weeks,â€‌ we hear, “weather permitting.â€‌ Bad weather conditions at sea delayed the departure of the topsides by about a week.

McDermott manufactured the single deck in two parts for ease of transport. By the time the topsides reach the Reliance block sometime in early March, McDermott technicians will be on hand to hook up the piping and other equipment and merge the two topsides into a single deck atop the jacket, which is already in position.

Work is also underway to lay the sub-sea pipelines that will carry the gas to shore. Of the 22 â€کChristmas’ trees that will be eventually installed sub-sea, Reliance is believed to have airlifted five to speed up development work.

“The final set of â€کChristmas’ trees will be installed last, in about two months from now,â€‌ we hear. Development drilling is also underway, with rigs Deepwater Frontier and Discoverer 534 on location.

“Nine wells are in various stages of completion,â€‌ we are told. “Initial production will be from 14 of the total 22 Phase-I wells approved by the DGH.

â€‌ D6 development wells are being drilled in three stages: the first set of wells is drilled up to the production zone; the second set through the production zone; and with the third set of wells, completion equipment is also being installed.