Sea and shore meet at Easington
The world’s longest submarine gas pipeline, under construction by Statoil, was tied into its land section at Easington on the UK east coast today, 22 June.
Due to run for 1,200 kilometres, Langeled will carry output from the Ormen Lange development being pursued by Norsk Hydro in the Norwegian Sea.
Production from this field is due to be processed at Nyhamna in mid-Norway and exported via the Sleipner Riser platform in the North Sea.
“A number of vessels are currently involved in laying Langeled,” reports Leif Solberg, Statoil’s project director for the pipeline.
The distance from Sleipner Riser to Easington, which forms the southern leg of Langeled, is 560 kilometres.
At the UK east coast, the Tog Mor laybarge connected the submarine line to a winch on land in order for it to be pulled ashore for the tie-in.
The onshore section of Langeled runs through a 400-metre tunnel to the receiving terminal.
Tog Mor is laying the submarine line in a water depth of 25 metres within the inshore zone.
The LB200 laybarge is currently laying pipe from north to south, but will transfer to Easington during July to pick up the section installed by Tog Mor and continue laying northwards.
This southern leg is due to start delivering gas from Sleipner East and Troll Gas – both operated by Statoil – in the autumn of 2006, a year before Ormen Lange comes on stream.
The northern leg, from Nyhamna to Sleipner Riser, will be laid next spring and is intended to be ready to start operation in the autumn of 2007.
Langeled will have an annual gas capacity of 20 billion cubic metres – enough to meet about 20 per cent of UK demand.
Statoil is responsible for executing the pipeline project on behalf of Hydro. Gassco will take over as Langeled operator when the system becomes operational.