Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC) Sour Gas—a joint venture of ADNOC (60%) and Occidental Petroleum Corp. (40%)—has let a contract to Saipem SPA to deliver engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) services for the upgrading and expansion of its Shah gas processing complex at Shah sour gas-condensate onshore field, southwest of Abu Dhabi City, UAE.
As part of the $510-million contract, Saipem will provide engineering, supply of materials, construction, and commissioning of new but yet-to-be-identified components designed to increase the plant’s daily gas treatment capacity by 13%, the service provider said in mid-June.
The expanded daily gas treatment capability will lift gas production capacity to 1.45 bcfd from a current output of 1.28 bcfd, representing a cumulative increase to 145% of the plant’s original design capacity, according to Saipem.
While it did not disclose further details regarding specific technologies selected for the project, Saipem did confirm technologies to be implemented would improve the plant’s safety and environmental performance when processing its ultra-sour gas feedstock, minimize its overall downtime, and ensure continuous production even during execution of maintenance works.
First announced in 2018, the proposed expansion—now officially known as the Optimum Shah Gas Expansion (OSGE) & gas gathering project—comes as part of the ADNOC 2030 strategy, which envisions higher oil production capacity and innovation in enhanced oil recovery, expansion of petrochemical production, and further development of natural gas resources (OGJ Online, July 10, 2017).
The operator has yet to confirm a definitive timeframe for OSGE’s completion.
Officially commissioned in April 2016 as the first project to produce and safely process more than 1 bcfd of ultra-sour gas—which has a hydrogen sulfide content of more than 23%—from a single plant, the Shah gas plant also produces 4.2 million tonnes/year of sulfur (OGJ Online, Apr. 26, 2016).
The plant also is equipped with capacity to produce condensate, ethane, and NGL, which—alongside its gas production—are delivered to ADNOC group companies for further processing or distribution to domestic consumers. Granulated sulfur produced at the site, however, is shipped to fertilizer manufacturers worldwide (OGJ Online, Oct. 15, 2018).