Working the Oil Patch

By MarEx 2012-12-26 12:40:00

Demountable Azimuthing thruster removal and repair   

Vessels working in the oil gas market are highly valuable and cannot afford to be taken off station. Considering the vast amount of underwater equipment, offshore operating companies require reliable underwater service partners with the right people and right equipment to perform the work efficiently and safely. The Subsea Solutions Alliance remains the underwater service partners for many major oil companies and offshore vessel equipment suppliers throughout the world.

While operating in the Gulf of Mexico two vessels were serviced for our clientele. Both offshore projects required the member companies of the Subsea Solutions Alliance to be fully vetted and approved by the owners for performing diving operations on their vessels at these offshore locations. This required the development of full dive plans inclusive of a risk analysis and contingency plans for those unexpected surprises that can occur during these complex repairs.

In order to perform ON-SHORE overhauls of large demountable azimuthing thrusters our first client required the thrusters to be demounted and brought shore-side for overhaul. The Subsea Solutions Alliance was contacted and provided all diving services and equipment to one of its Original Equipment Manufacturer partners as part of its global partnership. As these thrusters were out of service for an extended period of time and had not been demounted for over 10 years, they required overhaul and inspection prior to being put back into service. Prior to beginning the demounting process, over 10 years of marine growth needed to be removed from the thruster to hull interface point. This required specialized underwater hydro-blasting equipment and personnel trained in its use to safely and efficiently complete this tedious task. Once this critical interface area was clean, the demounting process could begin. The demounting process for these types of thrusters is a systematic process involving close coordination of personnel inboard on the vessel together with diver / technicians in the water. Once the unit is released inboard the vessel, the thrusters are lowered on strand jacks in a controlled fashion under the watchful guidance of the diver / technicians of the Subsea Solutions Alliance. Once the thruster is clear of the ship's hull the thruster load was efficiently transferred from the strand jacks to an awaiting crane barge for transport to the surface and to a shore side facility for overhaul. Providing a fully engineered and approved procedure that compliments the Original Equipment Manufacturers rigging and demounting plan is what offshore vessel operators expect from their diving partners. The Subsea Solutions Alliance listens to the industries requirements and consistently delivers!  

In addition to the project note above our expert diver / technicians were hired by another client to perform an inspection and subsequent repair to another azimuthing thruster that was leaking and taken out of service due to excessive water ingress. Even though the execution of the work is small in nature and "routine" when performed with a vessel along side, all bets are off when performed OFFSHORE on a vessel with only hours of available off hire time and a day rate exceeding 350,000 USD per day.... So, planning, and attention to the detail is what makes or breaks these projects. Making projects is what we are all about so the client relied solely on the Subsea Solutions Alliance to perform this inspection and subsequent repair.

Once on site the expert diver / technicians determined the root cause of the water ingress and within hours of coming on site the problem was resolved and the thruster was put back into service. Planning, attention to detail and trained and certified Diver / technicians is what makes the Subsea Solutions Alliance the trusted service provider for the oil and gas industry!

The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.