Fendercare subsidiary Hippo Marine has recently been awarded a contract by Subsea 7 for the supply of 80 pipelaying buoyancy modules, each with a net buoyancy of 2100kg and an operational depth rating of 40m. These are destined for use on phase 3B of the Escravos Gas Project being conducted offshore Onne (Nigeria).
The order is the culmination of a detailed joint engineering project, which took place within compressed timescales, to develop a flotation solution which has been tailored to Subsea 7’s operational requirements for this project. The project's design and construction features include the use of closed-cell subsea foam and advanced skin reinforcement materials as well as a universal base design. These features will allow these modules to be taken to and used on subsequent projects as required.
The 168,000kg of total net buoyancy (192,000kg of gross buoyancy) was completed within 6 weeks of receipt of order – with the first of these units coming off the production line within 4 weeks. Given the urgency of the requirement, the Hippo facility in Plymouth UK moved to a 24-hour shift pattern over the course of the manufacturing cycle in order to have all the modules completed in time to then be transported to Nigeria for first use during Q2 2011.
Over the course of this project, Hippo technical and commercial personnel worked closely with their counterparts in Subsea 7’s Paris office, the contract was then drawn up and signed locally between their Nigerian subsidiary Globestar Engineering and Fendercare Nigeria.