The Lufeng oil fields are located in the Pearl River Mouth Basin of the South China Sea, China, 265km away from Hong Kong. The water depth in the project area ranges between 140m and 330m.

Three oil fields, namely Lufeng 13-1, Lufeng 13-2 and Lufeng 7-2, are operational in the region. The Lufeng oil fields regional development project involves the development of four more oil fields in the region, namely Lufeng 14-4, Lufeng 14-8, Lufeng 15-1 and Lufeng 22-1.

Chinese state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) is the operator and holds 100% interest in the project.

The Lufeng oil fields regional development project commenced production in November 2021 and is expected to hit peak production of 46,000 barrels of crude oil a day (bopd) in 2023. It is intended to supply oil and gas to the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) of China.

Existing infrastructure at Lufeng oil fields

The Lufeng 13-1 oil field started operating with a drilling and production platform and a floating storage and offloading (FSO) vessel in 1993.

The Lufeng 13-2 commenced operation with a wellhead platform (WHP) in 2005 and with a DPP in 2011. The Lufeng 7-2 DPP started operations in 2014.

Crude oil from the three fields is sent to the FSO moored in Lufeng 13-1 field.

The FSO Nan Hai Sheng Kai, which had been operating at Lufeng oil fields since October 1993, was replaced by FSO Hai Yang Shi You 121 in May 2020.

New infrastructure at Lufeng oil fields

The Lufeng oil fields regional development utilises a four-legged drilling and production platform (DPP) in the Lufeng 15-1 field, an eight-legged DPP in the Lufeng 14-4 field, and a subsea production system (SPS) with four production wells in the Lufeng 22-1 field.

Lufeng 15-1 DPP has 16 well slots, whereas Lufeng 14-4 DPP, which also covers the development of the Lufeng 14-8 field, has a total of 24 well slots.

The offshore development plan involved 26 production wells and nine water injection wells. The reservoir pressure at Lufeng 14-4 and Lufeng 15-1 is maintained by water injection.

The subsea pipeline infrastructure for the project includes two 12in-diameter and 19km-long subsea export pipelines from Lufeng 22-1 SPS to Lufeng 15-1 DPP, a 25.88km-long and 12in-diameter pipeline connecting Lufeng 15-1 DPP with Lufeng 14-4 DPP, and a 24km-long and 12in-diameter pipeline from Lufeng 14-4 DPP to the pre-existing Lufeng 13-2 DPP.

The crude output of the four fields is sent through pipelines to the Lufeng 13-2 field for further export.

Lufeng 14-4 platform details

The Lufeng 14-4 platform, installed in May 2021, is claimed to be the biggest offshore crude oil production platform independently designed and constructed in China.

Installed in a water depth of 145m, the eight-legged platform stands 218m tall. It has an oil processing capacity of 28,000 barrels a day (bopd) and an associated gas processing capacity of 84,000 cubic metres a day.

Contractors involved in Lufeng oil fields regional development project

China Offshore Oil Engineering (COOEC), a subsidiary of CNOOC, was selected as the general contractor for the fabrication of Lufeng 14-4 DPP and Lufeng 15-1 DPP.

COOEC-Fluor Heavy Industries, a joint venture between COOEC and Fluor, fabricated the Lufeng 14-4 DPP at the Zhuhai Fabrication Yard in Guangdong Province, China.

OneSubsea was awarded an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract worth £112.3m ($143m) to supply an integrated subsea production and processing system for the Lufeng 22-1 oil field in the second quarter of 2020.