Autumn 2005 (13.3)
BP Current Developments
BTC Pipeline Filling Up
Tamam Bayatly, BP
The Azerbaijan section
of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil export pipeline was officially
inaugurated on May 25, 2005, by the presidents of Azerbaijan,
Georgia and Turkey in an official ceremony, which was held at
the BTC head pump station in the Sangachal Terminal near Baku.
Above: The Official Inauguration of the Azerbaijan
section of the BTC Pipeline.
From left: Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, Georgian President
Mikhail Saakashvili, US Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman, Azerbaijan's
President Ilham Aliyev and BP Chief Executive Lord John Browne.
Sangachal Terminal near Baku, May 25, 2005.
This event marked the official celebration of First Oil into
the Heydar Aliyev BTC main export pipeline. President Ilham Aliyev
of the Azerbaijan Republic hosted the event in which he was joined
by the President of Turkey Ahmet Necdet Sezer, President of Georgia
Mikhail Saakashvili and President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbeyev,
and a large group of visiting senior government and state officials,
senior executives of BTC owner companies and business representatives.
The Inauguration of BTC followed the commissioning of the BTC
Head Pump Station at the Sangachal Terminal earlier this month
and officially marks the commencement of the first linefill phase
of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil export pipeline.
A total of 10 million barrels of crude oil is required to fill
the 1,768 kilometer (nearly 1,100 miles) pipeline running from
the Sangachal Terminal to Georgia and on to the Ceyhan Terminal
on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey. The oil comes from the
Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) field in the Azerbaijan sector of
the Caspian Sea. The staged filling of the pipeline along its
entire route could take more than six months.
Central Azeri Compression and Water Injection Platform Topsides
sail away on September 21, 2005, marking the start of new oil
and gas technology in the Caspian.
David Woodward, BP Azerbaijan
Associate President, said: "Over the last decade nearly
$10 billion have been invested in this country's oil and gas
developments in the Caspian, and over the next decade that will
make the Caspian region one of the major sources of incremental
supply to the world market. Today marks the beginning of a new
chapter for both Azerbaijan and BP".
The inauguration of BTC also marked a major step in BP's continuing
long-term strategy of delivering growing volumes of oil and gas
from new hydrocarbon provinces around the world.
Speaking at the ceremony, BP Chief Executive Lord Browne described
the project as "a heroic engineering achievement, as ground-breaking
in today's context as Prudhoe Bay and the Trans-Alaskan pipeline
were 30 years ago. The pipeline opens up massive new fields in
the Caspian Sea to world markets, enhancing security of supply
for decades to come. And it does so in a way that avoids the
transit of large numbers of tankers through the narrow and congested
The BTC partners have contributed more than $100 million to community
investment, environmental and cultural heritage protection programs
among 454 communities along the pipeline's route.
Oil Crosses Border
On August 10, the first barrels of oil flowing through BTC reached
the Azerbaijan-Georgian border and entered the Georgian section.
Left: Installation of the Central Azeri Compression
and Water Injection Platform in September 2005. This is the first
time that this innovative technology is being utilized in the
This followed the filling of
the Azerbaijan section of the pipeline with about 2.3 million
barrels of oil.
The oil in the Georgian section is now moving between Pump Station
No 1 and Pump Station No. 2. The official celebration of First
Oil into the Georgian section of the pipeline was held in Tbilisi
on October 12, 2005. The event was hosted by Georgian President
Mikhail Saakashvili at the BTC pumping station near Gardabani
and attended by President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan and President
Ahmet Necdet Sezer of Turkey. BP Group Managing Director Iain
Conn and a large group of government officials, senior executives
of BTC owner companies and business representatives also attended.
West Azeri Jacket
The jacket for the West Azeri (WA) production, drilling and quarters
(PDQ) platform sailed away in May from the Heydar Aliyev Baku
Deepwater Jackets Factory (BDJF) and was successfully installed
offshore on the template at its permanent location in the Azeri
The WA PDQ jacket was fully assembled in country using local
construction infrastructure including BDJF facilities. The total
weight of the jacket is 14,400 tons. The height of the jacket
is 133 meters, and it is being installed at a water depth of
120 meters. The jacket has 16 piles, with a total weight of 10,100
tons. The offshore installation work took about 50 days to complete.
Following this, the WA platform
topsides sailed away on September 21 and were safely installed
offshore onto the jacket the next day.
The WA platform is the second new world-class production platform
BP will have installed offshore following Central Azeri. It is
located at 120m water depth on the west side of Azeri Field.
The commissioning of First Oil from West Azeri is planned for
January 2006 following completion of topsides offshore hook-up
activities. This will increase the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli oil
fields offshore facilities oil production capacity by an additional
340,000 barrels per day.
Gas to Azerbaijan
In May the Azerbaijan International Operating Company (AIOC)
commenced delivery of associated gas to the Azerbaijan state
from Central Azeri and Sangachal Terminal. diameter of 30 inches
Left: Inauguration of First Oil into the
Georgian section of the pipeline was held in Tbilisi on October
12, 2005. Left to right: BP Group Managing Director Iain Conn,
Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev, Georgian President Mikhail
Saakashvili, who hosted the event, and Turkish President Ahmet
This followed the completion, commissioning and successful testing
of new gas export pipeline which connects the Sangachal Terminal
gas processing facilities to the Azerigas' national grid system.
The design capacity of the pipeline is in excess of 19.8 million
cubic meters per day (700 million standard cubic feet per day)
at a pressure of up to 40 bar. AIOC expects to deliver in excess
of 300 million standard cubic meters of gas from Central Azeri
to Azerbaijan in 2005.
The associated gas currently comes from six Central Azeri wells,
which, in total, are now producing in excess of 140,000 barrels
of oil per day. From the platform, the gas is exported into the
Sangachal Terminal gas processing facilities via the new 28-inch
In the future, gas produced from Central Azeri, beyond that which
is to be used for reservoir pressure maintenance and fuel, will
continue to be exported via the 28-inch subsea pipeline into
the Sangachal Terminal and from there it will continue to be
transported, via the new gas export pipeline into the Azerigas
system for domestic use.
The associated gas produced from the Chirag platform will continue
to be sent to the SOCAR compression station at Oil Rocks via
the existing 16-inch subsea gas pipeline, and the remainder will
be sent to the Central Azeri compression and water injection
platform (C&WP) once it is operational in the first quarter
of 2006, for re-injection into the reservoir. No longer will
gas be flared on the Chirag platform. Currently, 100 million
scfd of associated gas is delivered to Azerbaijan from Chirag.
East Azeri Drilling
In June, the main drilling modules for the East Azeri (EA) production,
drilling and quarters (PDQ) platform arrived in Baku from the
Netherlands where they had been built. The total dry weight of
these modules including the drilling derrick is approximately
4,500 tons. The integration into the EA topsides and commissioning
will take place at Heydar Aliyev Baku Deepwater Jackets Factory
The drilling modules for the East Azeri platform, once erected,
will comprise three main components - the drilling support module,
the drilling equipment set and the drilling derrick. The modules
are designed to provide drilling from 48 slots during the operational
life of the East Azeri PDQ platform.
In June the Chirag platform reached the 300 million barrels production
milestone within the Early Oil Project (EOP).
Left: Azerbaijani stamp commemorating the
1100-mile BTC Pipeline through Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey.
This is a significant achievement, which reflects remarkable
oil production performance as Chirag has operated with very few
interruptions since the commencement of development drilling
and first oil production in 1997.
This is another outstanding accomplishment for Chirag and recognition
that Chirag continues to perform as a world-class facility. The
Chirag platform employs 250 people of whom more than 85 percent
are Azerbaijan nationals.
The production is processed at the Sangachal Terminal, which
has maintained an operating efficiency of near 100 percent. This
has enabled the Chirag Platform to continue production with virtually
The platform currently has 19 wells, of which 11 are active producing
wells and five are active water injection wells. Drilling operations
commenced on a new producing well A-20 in late July. Since the
beginning of this year the production activities on Chirag have
continued in accordance with the plan for 2005 with an operating
efficiency exceeding 96 percent. During 2005, it is expected
that Chirag will have an average production rate in excess of
134,000 barrels per day.
The topsides of the Central Azeri Compression and Water Injection
Platform (C&WP) sailed away successfully and were safely
launched offshore onto the jacket on July 3.
The C&WP Topsides is a world-class facility fully built in
the ATA yard in Bibi-Heybat near Baku. The facility has the following
gas and water injection and export capacities: Gas Injection:
1 billion standard cubic feet per day utilizing 5 gas injection
wells. Water Injection: 1 million barrels per day utilizing 12
water injection wells. Gas export: 250 million standard cubic
feet per day.
The C&WP platform will provide water and gas injection service
to Central/West and East Azeri platforms for necessary future
production operations. Once connected to these platforms, it
will also be able to manage gas associated with oil export.
Offshore installation and hook-up activities were completed in
late September and offshore commissioning is planned to be complete
by the end of this year.
The Shah Deniz project spudded the fourth pre-drill development
Left: Georgian stamp commemorating the East-West
Energy Corridor of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline. No Date.
The well will complete
the Shah Deniz Stage 1 Pre-Drilling Program. The well is being
drilled from the existing drilling template at a location that
is near the fields crest, with a drilling step-out of 1.4 km.
drill and suspend.
The water depth at the template location is approximately 101
meters. The anticipated drill depth of the well is 6,214 meters
and will take approximately 140 days. The successful completion
of the first three wells has resulted in gaining a significant
amount of experience of drilling in the Shah Deniz reservoir
and the South Caspian in general.
The fourth well will be yet another opportunity to build upon
BP's previous knowledge of this challenging drilling environment
and will enable the operator company to better plan for future
drilling operations from the platform after TPG500 is commissioned
in the first half of 2006.
Garadagh Football Tournament
In June the Sangachal Terminal held the Second Garadagh School
Football Tournament - an annual project to promote physical training.
Left: Jacobus Nieuwenhuijze, Sangachal Terminal
Expansion Programme Director, presents the trophy at the Second
Annual Garadagh School Soccer Tournament.
The number of teams
participating in this year's tournament increased significantly,
which clearly indicated that the event was becoming more popular
in the Garadagh district where the Sangachal Terminal is located.
This year's tournament involved 820 young people from 82 teams,
representing 11 communities of the Garadagh district, including
schools from the Umid refugee camp.
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