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Slick operations see’s Slug Catchers moved

MORE than 1,000 tonnes of equipment, to enable the processing of gas from a new North Sea pipeline, has been lifted into place on Teesside.

In a meticulously planned and executed transport and hoist operation lasting five days, four 250-tonne, 110-foot-long “slug catcher” vessels and a 60-ft, 50-tonne phase separator travelled the four miles from the Able UK dock to the Teesside Gas Processing Plant (TGPP).

Having been shipped to the Able UK dock on the north of the River Tees, the South Korean made vessels were loaded on to special heavy haul transporters.

Roads to the gas plant were then closed by a rolling road block during the four-hour overnight journeys, after each of which the vessels were carefully lifted into place by a specially constructed 1,200-tonne crane.

The exercise was part of a £450m project involving Teesside Gas and Liquids Processing (TGLP), a subsidiary of TGPP Limited; RWE Dea UK SNS Limited (RWE) and Sterling Resources (UK) Limited (Sterling) that will bring gas from the Breagh discovery to Teesside.

The Breagh gas field, owned by RWE (70%) and Sterling (30%), is located in the southern North Sea on the Dogger Shelf, around 100km from Teesside.

Operated by RWE, it is one of the North Sea’s largest gas discoveries in recent years and the project involves the construction of a new offshore platform and pipeline to bring gas ashore at Coatham Sands, Redcar, where it will be piped via a new pipeline to the TGPP at Seal Sands.

The Teesside-based px group, in its role as operator of the TGPP, is providing project management and development services and once the gas starts flowing, will run the processing operations, exporting clean gas to either the National Transmission System or local industrial users.

Ian Clifford, operations director with the px group: “This was an extremely well planned and executed project which went exactly as anticipated.

“The slug catchers will be needed to remove and store hydrocarbon liquid and monoethylene glycol slugs which the ‘wet’ gas pipeline, operating at high pressure will occasionally bring ashore.”

The first gas is expected to be landed over the summer.

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