Shell floats hull for world’s largest FLNG facility

The 488-m hull of Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s Prelude floating LNG (FLNG) plant was floated from the dry dock at the Samsung Heavy Industries yard in Geoje, South Korea, where Prelude is being built. The company laid the keel for the vessel in May.

Shell’s first deployment of FNLG technology, Prelude FLNG will be the largest floating facility in the world once it’s complete and is expected to produce 3.6 million tonnes/year of LNG.

The facility will operate for 25 years in a remote basin 475 km northeast of Broome, Western Australia, developing the Prelude and nearby Concerto gas fields in permit WA-371-P with total reserves of 3 tcf of gas and about 120 million bbl of condensate. Prelude FLNG is designed to withstand a category 5 cyclone.

Shell said the facility will enable the development of gas resources ranging from clusters of smaller more remote fields to potentially larger fields through multiple facilities.

Shell in September began drilling the first of seven development wells in the Prelude field using the Noble Clyde Boudreaux drilling vessel. The drilling campaign is expected to last 2 years (OGJ Online, Sept. 17, 2013).

The facility is scheduled for startup in 2016 (OGJ Online, Oct. 14, 2009).

The company in 2010 signed contracts with Technip and Samsung Heavy Industries specifying front-end engineering and design aspects of the project and terms under which it would be built (OGJ Online, Mar. 10, 2010).

Shell is the operator of the Prelude field with Inpex 17.5%, Kogas 10%, and OPIC 5% (OGJ Online, Mar. 19, 2012; May 10, 2012).

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