Statoil has issued a letter of intent to Samsung Heavy Industries of South Korea for construction of a floating storage unit to replace a buoy loading system now on Heidrun oil and gas field in the Norwegian Sea.
Heidrun has produced since 1995 through a tension-leg platform with a concrete hull. Oil now flows into two buoys that load purpose-built shuttle tankers.
The new, permanently manned floating storage unit will be permanently connected to a buoy, which will load shuttle tankers. Water depth is about 350 m.
Statoil said it hopes to keep Heidrun on production at least until 2045.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate estimates Heidrun production this year at 52,000 b/d of oil and 710 million standard cu m of natural gas.
The contract with Samsung Heavy Industries is worth $230 million. Statoil has the option for two additional units.
Statoil operates the field with a 12.4% interest. Other interests are Petoro 58.16%, ConocoPhillips Skandinavia 24.31%, and Eni Norge 5.11%.