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More Åsgard gas with new technology

July 19, 2006, 10:00 CEST

Statoil plans to use seabed compression in order to produce more gas from the Åsgard field in the Norwegian Sea. This is the first use of this technology for commercial purposes.

Boosting the pressure in the gas flow the seabed compressor will compensate for dropping pressure in the reservoir. Gas production from Åsgard is expected to increase by 25% when this technology is employed, i.e. approximately 30 to 40 billion cubic metres. Installation of the compressor on the seabed is scheduled for 2012/2013. Qualification of the seabed technology will take place towards 2012.

"This means that the business potential on the subsea field Mikkel, which is tied in to Åsgard, and on the Åsgard deposit Midgard, will be better exploited. The technology should make us better prepared for more demanding projects in the future. Gas compression may be relevant both for the Troll field in the North Sea and Snøhvit in the Barents Sea,” says Knut Nordstad, senior adviser at Statoil’s research centre in Trondheim, where the technology was developed.

Seabed compression at Åsgard will give Statoil useful experience for future projects. A number of tasks may be performed by the compressor on the seabed.

Seabed processing is particularly relevant in Arctic waters. If Statoil becomes a partner on the Shtokman field in the Russian part of the Barents Sea, experience associated with new seabed technology will be useful.

Statoil and the other partners in the Åsgard licence invest slightly more than NOK 4 billion in the project.

The installation will be located in 250 metres of water depth some 50 kilometres from the Åsgard B platform. In connection with seabed processing tasks such as pumping, separation, compression and filtering are performed on the seabed rather than on the platform. The technology will contribute to great cost savings and secure production until 2021.

Statoil is operator for Åsgard, (25% interest). The other licensees are Petoro (35.5), Hydro (9.6), Eni (14.9), Total (7.65) and ExxonMobil (7.35).