Prelude will not resume full production this year, says Shell - News


The crew of the Prelude wave from the helideck as an LNG tanker docks alongside

SHELL has said its huge floating LNG production plant the Prelude FLNG facility is not expected to resume full production this year, following a troubled start for the pioneering facility.

Production aboard Prelude which at 488 m long is the largest ship ever built was halted in February after an electrical trip and it has not resumed. This fault followed, though was not linked to, an order from Australias National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) for Shell to revise its safety management system.

NOPSEMA issued its order to Shell earlier this year following what is described as three dangerous occurrences onboard that involved loss of containment. The spills of hydrocarbon late last year and earlier this year happened during maintenance and plant inspection activities. NOPSEMA blamed deficiencies in Shells systems for safe isolation of plant. It pointed to inadequate descriptions and training for how to control venting of hydrocarbons, and for identifying or tagging equipment that needs to be worked on.

Shell started operations at Prelude in December 2018, 475 km off the coast of Western Australia. The idea behind FLNG is that a floating plant can be towed to distant or small gas fields from which production would be uneconomical using conventional piped connections to onshore processing plants. Once the field is exhausted, the ship is towed to anothe....

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