Biggest single order in history: 84 km clad pipes for Brazil

BUTTING has won the biggest single order in its 230 year history. The order, from Subsea 7, a global leader in seabed-to-surface engineering, construction and services to the offshore industry, is for 84 km of clad pipes for the Guará-Lula NE field project in Brazil.

The Guará-Lula NE fields are part of the largest pre-salt oil fields discovered by Petrobras in the Santos basin off the coast of Brazil. Exploration will take place in the coming years, under extremely technically challenging conditions: more than 6,000 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean. To date, the US $ 1 billion SURF (subsea umbilical, riser and flowlines) project awarded to Subsea 7, for four decoupled riser systems to be installed in the Guarà-Lula NE is the largest engineering, procurement, installation and commissioning (EPIC) contract awarded to date in Brazil.

The risers for the production, gas and water supply pipes will be equipped by Subsea 7 from the buoys with BuBi® pipes and clad pipes from Knesebeck. As the BUTTING pipes will be used in the demanding conditions of the seabed and around 750 feet below the surface of the water, the clad pipes must be fabricated to very strict tolerance standards.

For BUTTING, the order means delivering a total of more than 75 km of BuBi® pipes and 9 km of metallurgically clad pipes. Because of these conditions, the material combination of Grade 450 and Alloy 625 was selected.

Before the order was awarded, it was vital to ensure the reel capability of the mechanically clad pipes. Subsea 7 and BUTTING set up a joint comprehensive programme to develop the technology and demonstrate its suitability. This was accredited last year by independent institutions. Thus, these projects will for the first time see the laying of the BuBi® pipes by Subsea 7 using the reel-lay process. The mechanically clad pipe was technologically certified by the DNV under DNV RP A-203 for this special use.

Production will begin in Knesebeck in July 2011, and the first pipes are to be delivered in November 2011.

BUTTING - Progress by Tradition