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Wintershall starts gas production from Wingate, UK North Sea

Production of natural gas started from the Wintershall Noordzee BV-operated Wingate project on Block 44/24b in the UK North Sea.

Wintershall expects an initial production of 1.5 million cu m/day of gas from Wingate and a production of 3 million cu m/day after completing a second well. Reservoir depth is at 3,700 m.

The company drilled the field's discovery well in 2008 and constructed the platform at the Dordrecht dockyards in Ridderkerk, Netherlands.

Wintershall remotely controls the platform from Den Helder, Netherlands.

The platform is fully self-sufficient with produced gas powering a minipower turbine for generating electricity.

The Wingate platform is about 1,200 sq m in size. The platform topsides weigh about 950 tons and are on an 850 ton, 45-m tall four-leg jacket. Overall platform height is 70 m.

A 20-km pipeline will transport the gas to the GDF Suez D15-A platform, in the Dutch North Sea. From there, the gas will go 300 km to near Uithuizen, Netherlands.

Wintershall said it now controls 20 platforms from its remote control center in Den Helder. Eighteen are offshore Netherlands, one is in the German North Sea, and Wingate is in the UK North Sea.

“This type of remote operation has allowed a reduction in the number of transport and supply flights normally needed to the platforms by a third.” Wintershall said. It also added “The center also plays a key role in the successful commercial production of smaller reserves in the southern section of the North Sea.”

Wintershall holds a 49.5% in the project. Its partners are Gazprom Germania GMBH 20%, XTO UK Ltd. (Exxon Mobil) 15.5%, and Gas-Union GMBH 15%.

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