Oil platform opts for actuators

Actuator specialist Rotork has been selected to provide intelligent electric actuators for one of the largest offshore development projects in the Norwegian continental shelf, Johan Sverdrup.

Energy company Equinor ordered in excess of 700 of Rotork’s IQ multi and part-turn actuators for the Johan Sverdrup oil field in the North Sea, which is located approximately 150 km away from the coast of Stavanger.

Known as the North Sea Giant, the Johan Sverdrup oil field loo to be one of the most important industrial projects in Norway during the next 50 years, says Rotork, with expected resources of between 2.1 to 3.1 billion barrels of oil equivalents. At peak production, Johan Sverdrup will produce 25% of all Norwegian petroleum. Johan Sverdrup expect to increase daily production capacity to 535,000 barrels by mid-2021.

In the biggest Norwegian project of the last decade, the actuators provide an extensive range of flow control services across the drilling, riser, process and living quarters. They control everything from the supply of water to engineers in their living quarters on the platform, to the precise control of flow needed for the extraction of oil. This was phase one of the project. Rotork are now currently supplying to phase two; this includes actuators for the new process platform and riser platform modifications. They are now undergoing commissioning by Rotork service engineers in Thailand and Norway.

In addition to the IQ actuators, several hundred Schischek InMax fail-safe quarter-turn electric actuators and AB-SS quarter-turn gearboxes have also been installed. Midland-ACS IMPACT high integrity modular pneumatic actuator control panels have also been installed in order to enable critical fail-safe functionality.

The electric actuators are linked using Rotork’s Pakscan™ network bus system controlled by 17 Rotork Master Stations. Six more have been ordered for Phase Two of the Johan Sverdrup project. The system can control up to 240 actuators on a single 20 km 2-wire loop using standard twisted pair cabling. The Rotork Master Station is available in single or dual configuration, while a hot standby option provides a replica unit to assume network control and ensure reliability.

The firm is providing ongoing asset management and condition-based maintenance for actuators installed on the platform. Performance data is recorded so that maintenance can be carried out on site.