Subsea pipelay systems, repair tools advance

Saipem 7000's massive J-lay tower dominates the deck of the former service vessel as it moves out to sea trials earlier this year (Fig. 1).Click here to enlarge imageThe pace of subsea pipelay and repair technology has accelerated in recent months, keyed by the introduction of a new deepwater vessel whose first job will be in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.Italian contractor Saipem reported early last month that its new pipelay vessel, equipped with a J-lay tower, had successfully conducted sea trials and by yearend would begin laying pipe in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.Earlier in the summer, Coflexip Stena Offshore announced that its deepwater flexible-pipe lay vessel, the Sunrise 2000, had been ...

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