Much of the gas reserves in the world are found in offshore fields, perhaps as much as one-third, or 60 trillion cubic metres (tcm). Gas that is found offshore generally has to be brought onshore for its value to be realised. Thus, in all of the many offshore gas fields and gas associated with oil production, the gas is processed to the extent necessary to pipeline it to shore, where it can be processed to consumer specification and, ultimately, sold into the gas distribution network.

a report by J o h n A S h e f f i e l d

Much of the gas reserves in the world are found in offshore fields, perhaps as much as one-third, or 60 trillion cubic metres (tcm). Gas that is found offshore generally has to be brought onshore for its value to be realised. Thus, in all of the many offshore gas fields and gas associated with oil production, the gas is processed to the extent necessary to pipeline it to shore, where it can be processed to consumer specification and, ultimately, sold into the gas distribution network. For many years, numerous individuals and organisations have been striving to realise a project to liquefy the gas on an LNG floating production storage and off-load vessel (FPSO). The obvious imperatives have been the perceived need to process the following types of gas.

-Associated gas, i.e. gas that is a ‘by-product’ of offshore oil production and that cannot, economically, be processed and pipelined to shore. Such gas was previously flared, but for many years now, these practices have been declared unacceptable and the only solution has been to re-inject the gas into the reservoir. This can be beneficial in the short term in terms of enhancing the oil production, but will ultimately be detrimental as the gas/oil ratio inevitably increases. Typically, gas reserves would be smaller than 28bcm and the gas would be rich in natural gas liquids (NGLs)/condensates, some of which might be removed by processing on the oil FPSO.

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