DISCOVER Magazine #7

Hebron project

Published in category: Countries

The megaproject keeping our Canadian clients busy

In the space of little more than a decade, Canada has become one of our most important markets. For example, our contract with Atlantic Towing for four specialised platform supply vessels is the largest ever awarded to Damen Shipyards Gorinchem, kicking off a period of intense collaboration with the Canadian company. We are also proud to have Canadian clients operating in a wide range of markets, including Off shore Oil & Gas, Public Transport, Dredging & Marine Contracting and Defence & Security. We’re forging ever closer maritime ties between the Netherlands and Canada, investing in research partnerships and sharing shipbuilding know-how. And with the Damen flag flying at our service hub in St John’s, we are proud to be close to our Canadian clients.

The long road to Mosquito Cove weaves past glacial rocky outcrops and thick forest on its way through the sparse Newfoundland landscape. And then, near the deepwater construction site at Bull Arm where the Hebron Platform is taking shape, there’s a long traffi c jam of pickup trucks. Thousands of workers coming and going symbolise the scale of this megaproject. And Damen’s Canadian clients are heavily involved, showing the breadth and value of our products and engineering services for off shore oil and gas. Here, we zoom in on the activities of three of our clients.

Hebron – a major offshore oil field
* The field is approximately 300 kilometres off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador not far from the iconic Hibernia field platform.
* Located in 90-metre deep waters in the Jeanne d’Arc Basin, in the Grand Banks.
* First discovered in 1980, the field is estimated to produce more than 700 million barrels of recoverable resources.
* Platform construction began in 2012; first oil is expected in 2017.
* Among the project’s many shareholders, ExxonMobil Canada has the lead with 36%.

Demanding offshore support: Atlantic Towing
Starting in 2017, Canada’s Atlantic Towing, part of the Irving Transportation and Logistics Division, will take delivery of four Damen PSV 5000 vessels. Atlantic Towing selected Damen’s ice-strengthened designs to meet its 10-year offshore support contract. Based out of St. John’s, these vessels will operate in the challenging sub-arctic waters of the Hibernia and Hebron oil fields. Damen designed the vessels with a special hull form for performance in the Grand Banks – an area known for sea ice, icebergs and harsh meteorological and  oceanographic conditions (for example, the wreck of the RMS Titanic is nearby). All four will benefit from iceberg management tools, while one of the vessels is equipped for Inspection, Repair and Maintenance duties (100-tonne subsea crane with advanced heave compensation). As well as delivering the vessels on time and on budget, Damen is setting up a local service and maintenance centre for the four vessels in St. John’s.

Construction pontoons: McKeil-Malaspina
At the Bull Arm site, the Canadian partnership McKeil-Malaspina has supplied a flotilla of barges to support construction of the stand-alone Gravity Based Structure. When completed, the structure will be 120 metres tall. To reach that height, concrete – 132,000 cubic metres of it – is being poured into a continuously moving form, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. There were not enough Canadian flag barges available for the project, so the partnership looked further afield for cost-effective solutions that met the exacting demands for the flotilla. In 2013 the partnership took delivery of Tobias, a Stan Pontoon 12032 and the largest pontoon built so far by Damen. Tobias carries a mobile cement plant and is the largest in the flotilla, which also includes a second Damen-built barge.

Tobias, the largest Damen pontoon
* Damen Stan Pontoon 12032
* Length 120 metres
* Beam 32.2 metres
* Deadweight 20,100 tonnes
* Deck space 3,837 m2, enough to fit 115 Damen Stan Launch 804 vessels

Inshore floatover installation: Kiewit Kvaerner Contractors

A number of Hebron’s topsides modules are under construction in Newfoundland, while a subcontractor in Korea is fabricating the largest module, which will be transported to Bull Arm by Dockwise’s Blue Marlin.

Following integration of the modules, a pair of mating barges will lift and carry the integrated Hebron topsides to the Gravity Based Structure (GBS) for a float over installation (inshore mating). Last year Kiewit Kvaerner Contractors awarded Damen Shiprepair Amsterdam the contract to prefabricate and install the mating barge grillage, with Damen company Niron Staal Amsterdam carrying out the steel prefabrication works.

These structures will be used to lift off, transport and transfer the topsides from the integration finger pier to the GBS at the deep water construction site at Bull Arm. The total steel tonnage for this package is approximately 2,400 tonnes. The nominal height of the grillage structures above the main deck on each mating barge is up to approx. 9 metres.

Ruud Haneveer, Commercial Manager – Americas at Damen Shiprepair & Conversion, comments, “First steel was cut on 31 March; right on schedule. We are looking forward to seeing the barges arriving in the last quarter of this year. Already we are proud to be part of this magnificent Hebron project”. The complete platform will then be towed to the production site for hook-up and commissioning.


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