Six tips to help you navigate from consent to construction
In the first of a series of renewable energy blogs, our renewables director shares his seven bid-winning tips ahead of the upcoming offshore wind leasing rounds. Each article in our renewables mini-series will go more in depth on each of these seven points.
Both The Crown Estate (TCE) and Crown Estate Scotland (CES) are currently working to develop new leasing rounds to allow more offshore wind projects to be built over the next decade and beyond. Preparing yourself for the bidding round involves a lot of thought and resources and the process can be a daunting thought for existing UK offshore wind developers as well as new entrants.
With our experience and knowledge of previous leasing rounds and ongoing support to the UK offshore renewables industry in all UK jurisdictions, we have devised seven key tips to focus thoughts and make your bid a success:
An international study, recently completed by Xodus on behalf of Scottish Enterprise has benchmarked the competitiveness, capabilities and innovation in the Scottish subsea market with regions across the world. The findings will help to shape a range of projects and activities in support of Scottish Enterprise’s Subsea Engineering Action Plan.
OPRED have issued revised guidance on projects excluded from an EIA Direction*
This year’s Environmental Interactions of Marine Renewable Energy Technologies (EIMR) conference in Orkney should be very interesting as it is an exciting time for the sector and the region. Marine renewable devices are now getting deployed in the region, including the world’s flagship tidal stream array project, MeyGen, which we have been heavily involved with.
Our vibration engineers have added a powerful new motion visualisation capability to their suite of vibration assessment tools. The IRIS-M Motion Amplification System consists of a highly specified video camera and a PC-based controller and capture device. The software package allows standard recorded video images to be amplified, revealing the detail of vibration which cannot be seen by the naked eye.
In this example, the high magnitude transient behaviour of
the line is not visible on the unamplified video (left), while it is obvious on
the amplified video (right).
I had a chance to sit down with Craig MacKay, a Process Dynamics Team Lead at Xodus Group. Craig has 16 years of experience in Dynamic Analysis and Operator Training. Dynamic Modeling can be intimidating for new users, but it is an extremely powerful tool. Hear Craig’s take on the tricks, the value and the future of dynamic modeling. This blog was originally published on the Aspen Tech Blog.
Hywind, the world’s first full-scale floating wind farm, has now reached a key milestone with the installation of its five colossal turbines off the north-east coast of Scotland.
Multiple excitation sources exist within modern process plants that can cause damage due to vibration related degradation mechanisms. Without identification and control, these can lead to component failure and the associated safety, environmental, business and reputational losses.
We regularly perform flow induced vibration (FIV) assessments of piping systems to understand whether any vibration induced by internal flow is within acceptable levels.
Through our fully integrated offering, Xodus has vast experience in delivering complete commercial solutions for renewable projects through an extensive suite of capabilities from engineering and project management to technical safety and risk management services. Now, we are taking these capabilities to the next level.
Between now and 2040, around one-sixth of approximately 470 North Sea installations will require decommissioning. Cost estimates for undertaking this mammoth scale of work is rising exponentially - the total UK offshore decommissioning expenditure is now predicted to hit £50 billion by 2055, according to Oil & Gas UK’s Activity Survey 2016. As all subsea infrastructures interact with the seabed in some manner, understanding the geotechnical aspects and managing geotechnical risk will be of significant benefit to executing decommissioning projects successfully and cost-efficiently.
No-one wants to pick-up bad vibes whether it’s the inference in something said, that gut feeling something isn’t quite right or experience of a similar previous situation which turned unpleasant. As well as the metaphorical ‘bad vibes’ that can affect our daily lives, the oil and gas industry has had to contend with literal bad vibes causing significant problems to the integrity of offshore platforms, pipework and associated subsea equipment.
The weather is infamously the UK’s favourite subject of conversation, and nowhere more so than in the offshore industries. Metocean conditions on the UKCS can be extreme as well as being ever-variable. Of these two characteristics, it is the impact of variability that is the hardest to accurately quantify on offshore intervention campaigns, whether greenfield development, brownfield modification or decommissioning projects.
Noise in the workplace is often seen as the Justin Bieber of safety concerns; whilst most people are now aware of it, the temptation can be to simply stick your fingers in your ears and pretend it doesn’t exist.
Our recent experience has shown that deck handling may actually prove to be a period of particularly high risk to a subsea product during installation. These complex operations are often engineered through the use of standardised calculations or through simplistic modelling. With ongoing advances in Finite Element Analysis (FEA) software, these operations can now be modelled in significantly more detail. This can mitigate risks prior to mobilisation and optimise operability during handling and installation. Such detailed modelling can remove unnecessary conservatism and potentially allow installation in increased weather windows.
Imagine that you are a caterpillar munching on a succulent leaf at the tip of a lush tree in the woods. Life is simple. You look back and remember a purposeful climb to reach that perfect leaf, not realising the millions of possible options you left behind at every branch you picked. In hindsight, your climb was a linear journey from the root to the ultimate lunch. However, the hovering crow that is about to eat you knows that your leaf is not so unique.
Operators are facing costly and time consuming production and regulatory challenges that require a clever approach to managing technical safety and risk.
This blog is the first in a series on Asset Management and Technical Integrity Assurance. It aims to generate discussion on what exactly the term means, how it’s perceived, its impact and effectiveness in today’s ever-changing energy sector. It will also explore the aspects that collectively integrate to provide a robust asset management structure in order to provide stable operations and a cost-effective business model.
Cost reduction in the oil and gas industry is now top of the agenda as we face the consequences of the market downturn and a volatile oil price. That’s not surprising or unusual, but where can cuts be made and what affect will it have? Very rarely can we achieve a cost reduction that does not affect the functional requirements of the system. Generally, every cut generates a trade-off on performance or other aspects of the life of field economics.
Decommissioning North Sea facilities is projected to cost £35 billion over the next two decades with £1 billion spent by UK producers last year, according to Oil & Gas UK. The rate of decommissioning activity is accelerating and rising costs against the backdrop of a low oil price is impacting further. Next year will see the culmination of a decade of planning as Shell’s Brent Delta platform topsides is removed. The industry is discussing the best way to further collaborate to drive efficiencies.
It is clear that despite the current difficulties facing the subsea sector due to low oil prices and rising costs, interest in subsea processing, such as boosting and compression, subsea separation and raw seawater treatment and injection, will continue to gain momentum to deliver cost-efficiencies and optimisation of systems.
Dr. Mark Hutchinson
Mark has devised an innovative technique for assessing corrosion and erosion in pipelines that can provide clients with a much greater degree of accuracy.