Mar 05, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – Following successful mechanical repairs and tests, ExxonMobil reported yesterday that its deflective flash gas compressor is now fully repaired, and is set to return to Guyana for installation by month’s end. This is in keeping with the eight weeks estimate provided by Exxon. It was Exxon’s Production Manager, Mike Ryan, who related these details during a virtual press engagement, yesterday.
Ryan indicated to the press that the compressor has been tested on the test bench within MAN Energy – the manufacturer of the compressor – within Germany, where repairs were conducted.
“We reviewed the data” the Production Manager said, “and the MAN engineers and the SMB engineers and ourselves, we’ve accepted the test results and the machine is getting ready to make its way back to Guyana.”
He continued, “We have also completed repairs on the discharge silencer on the other shell and the plate internally, and the discharge silencer is getting ready. The inlet silencer is ready to go, so good progress there.”
In addition to that, Ryan mentioned that Exxon had identified all of the key resources to assist it with installation, start up and monitoring of the machine offshore. With this he explained, “You may recall from other updates that we have done, during COVID we take the safety of our personnel first and foremost and as first priority. So we put everybody that goes out to the FPSO or our facilities through two-week quarantine… That’s in time for the arrival of the equipment for installation and then start up.”
ExxonMobil has been flaring above safe pilot levels – the minimum amount of flaring required to maintain a safe operation – since January 30 after it encountered issues with the compressor. It has been flaring about 16-18 million cubic feet of natural gas every day. This year, it has already flared upward of 300 million cubic feet of gas, according to this newspaper’s calculations.
ExxonMobil had flared gas for an entire year, also due to an issue with its equipment, and had taken an entire year to resolve the issue. By then, it had already flared more than 12 billion cubic feet of gas.
ExxonMobil noted prominently in yesterday’s update that MAN Energy has confirmed there is no linkage between the production optimization activities and the technical issues with the flash gas compressor. “At the time of the incident with the compressor, it was only operating at 70 percent of its design capacity. Production optimization is a normal process for operations around the world. A comprehensive safety evaluation took place prior to the optimization process.”
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