The Clair Ridge development project commenced production in November 2018. Image courtesy of BP.
The Clair Ridge development project is operated by BP. Image courtesy of BP.

Clair Ridge is the second phase development of the Clair field located 75km off the west coast of Shetland in North Sea, UK. It started producing oil towards the end of November 2018.

With an estimated production life of 40 years, the peak production capacity of the Clair Ridge project is expected to be 120,000 barrels of oil a day (bod).

Construction on the £4.5bn ($5.7bn) Clair Ridge development started after receiving development approval from the UK government in October 2011.

The Clair Ridge development project is owned by the operator BP (45.1%), Shell (28%), Chevron (19.4%), and Conoco Phillips (7.5%).

Clair Ridge development project history and details

The Clair offshore field was discovered in 1977 and is estimated to hold seven billion barrels of recoverable oil-equivalent reserves.

Sanctioned by the UK Government in 2001, the Clair phase one project was developed with a single fixed production platform and associated oil and gas export pipelines.

Brought on-stream in February 2005, the Clair field produced 80 million barrels of oil until 2018. The Clair phase one is expected to continue production until 2028.

Clair Ridge development project is located to the north of Clair phase one project and targets an accumulation of approximately 640 million barrels of oil reserves within the giant Clair field.

Clair Ridge development details

The Clair Ridge development comprises 26 oil production wells and ten water injector wells tied-back to a fixed drilling and production platform (DP) via three eight-slot subsea manifolds.

The project also involved the installation of a quarters and utilities (QU) platform.

Both the platforms are supported by steel jacket foundations at a water depth of 140m and are connected with each other by a bridge.

The DP platform is supported by 22,300t of steel jacket, whereas the QU platform is supported by a 9,000t steel jacket.

The Clair Ridge DP platform comprises five topside modules including the drilling platform east and west modules, compression module, drilling equipment set module, and a drilling support module.

BP uses its LoSal oil recovery technology at Clair Ridge for reducing salinity in the water injection systems in order to improve the oil recovery.

Oil and gas supply from Clair Ridge

The oil produced by the Clair Ridge production platform is sent via a 5.5km-long and 22in-diameter new oil export pipeline connecting the existing oil export pipeline of the Clair phase one project.

The oil export pipeline of the Clair field connects to the  Sullom Voe terminal located onshore at Shetland.

The gas produced from Clair Ridge is transmitted through a 14.6km-long and 6in-diameter diameter gas export pipeline connecting the West of Shetland Pipeline Systems (WOSPS), which also supplies gas to the Sullom Voe terminal.

Contractors involved with the Clair Ridge development project

AMEC was engaged for the conceptual engineering studies for the Clair Ridge project from 2008 to 2009.

RDS, a subsidiary of KCA Deutag, was awarded the drilling contract for the Clair Ridge development in August 2009.

Aker Solutions received the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contract for the steel jackets of both the offshore platforms for the Clair Ridge development project in July 2010, whereas the topsides were delivered by Hyundai Heavy Industries under a $620m contract.

The jacket installation contract was awarded to Heerema Marine Contractors (HMC), which further sub-contracted Acteon for the supply of installation equipment including a 3,500kJ MENCK MHU 3500S hydraulic hammer.

Subsea 7 was awarded the engineering, procurement, construction, and installation (EPCI) contract for the new oil and gas export pipelines for the Clair Ridge project in February 2012.

Subsea 7 also supplied and installed three manifold structures, two umbilical jumpers, and the tie-in spools for the Clair Ridge project.

Emerson Process Management was awarded a contract worth $23m for providing the automated integrated control systems for the Clair Ridge platform in May 2012.

Amec Foster Wheeler was awarded an $87m hook-up and commissioning services contract for the two Clair Ridge platforms in March 2013.

Cape was also awarded a contract worth $12.5m to provide support services during the hook-up and commissioning of the offshore platforms.

MTU Friedrichshafen provided the power generation systems for the Clair Ridge offshore platforms, whereas Nexan provided the Halogen-Free Fire-Resistant (HFFR), shock, water, and mud-resistant cables for the Clair Ridge platforms.

Oil & Gas Systems (OGS) provided the oil and gas fiscal metering packages for the Clair Ridge project.

MTE provided the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems (HVAC) for the living quarters on the Clair Ridge platform.

Mojix provided its wide-area passive radio frequency identification (RFID) solution for the Clair Ridge project.