Hibernia (oil field)
Overview
 
Hibernia is an oil field
Oil field
An oil field is a region with an abundance of oil wells extracting petroleum from below ground. Because the oil reservoirs typically extend over a large area, possibly several hundred kilometres across, full exploitation entails multiple wells scattered across the area...

 in the North Atlantic Ocean, approximately 315 kilometres (195.7 mi) east-southeast of St. John's
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
St. John's is the capital and largest city in Newfoundland and Labrador, and is the oldest English-founded city in North America. It is located on the eastern tip of the Avalon Peninsula on the island of Newfoundland. With a population of 192,326 as of July 1, 2010, the St...

, Newfoundland
Newfoundland and Labrador
Newfoundland and Labrador is the easternmost province of Canada. Situated in the country's Atlantic region, it incorporates the island of Newfoundland and mainland Labrador with a combined area of . As of April 2011, the province's estimated population is 508,400...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

.

The production platform Hibernia is the world's largest oil platform
Oil platform
An oil platform, also referred to as an offshore platform or, somewhat incorrectly, oil rig, is a lаrge structure with facilities to drill wells, to extract and process oil and natural gas, and to temporarily store product until it can be brought to shore for refining and marketing...

 and consists of a 37,000-tonne
Tonne
The tonne, known as the metric ton in the US , often put pleonastically as "metric tonne" to avoid confusion with ton, is a metric system unit of mass equal to 1000 kilograms. The tonne is not an International System of Units unit, but is accepted for use with the SI...

 integrated topsides facility mounted on a 600,000-tonne gravity base structure
Gravity base structure
A gravity-based structure is a support structure held in place by gravity. A common application for a GBS is an offshore oil platform. These structures are often constructed in fjords since their protected area and sufficient depth are very desirable for construction...

. The platform was towed to its final site, and 450,000 tonnes of solid ballast were added to secure it in place.
Encyclopedia
Hibernia is an oil field
Oil field
An oil field is a region with an abundance of oil wells extracting petroleum from below ground. Because the oil reservoirs typically extend over a large area, possibly several hundred kilometres across, full exploitation entails multiple wells scattered across the area...

 in the North Atlantic Ocean, approximately 315 kilometres (195.7 mi) east-southeast of St. John's
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
St. John's is the capital and largest city in Newfoundland and Labrador, and is the oldest English-founded city in North America. It is located on the eastern tip of the Avalon Peninsula on the island of Newfoundland. With a population of 192,326 as of July 1, 2010, the St...

, Newfoundland
Newfoundland and Labrador
Newfoundland and Labrador is the easternmost province of Canada. Situated in the country's Atlantic region, it incorporates the island of Newfoundland and mainland Labrador with a combined area of . As of April 2011, the province's estimated population is 508,400...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

.

The production platform Hibernia is the world's largest oil platform
Oil platform
An oil platform, also referred to as an offshore platform or, somewhat incorrectly, oil rig, is a lаrge structure with facilities to drill wells, to extract and process oil and natural gas, and to temporarily store product until it can be brought to shore for refining and marketing...

 and consists of a 37,000-tonne
Tonne
The tonne, known as the metric ton in the US , often put pleonastically as "metric tonne" to avoid confusion with ton, is a metric system unit of mass equal to 1000 kilograms. The tonne is not an International System of Units unit, but is accepted for use with the SI...

 integrated topsides facility mounted on a 600,000-tonne gravity base structure
Gravity base structure
A gravity-based structure is a support structure held in place by gravity. A common application for a GBS is an offshore oil platform. These structures are often constructed in fjords since their protected area and sufficient depth are very desirable for construction...

. The platform was towed to its final site, and 450,000 tonnes of solid ballast were added to secure it in place. Inside the gravity base structure are storage tanks for 1.2 Moilbbl of crude oil. http://www.hibernia.ca/ The Hibernia platform is at N46°45.026' W48°46.976'.

Exploration before development

Exploration drilling to map the field began in the 1960s and continued into the 1980s, with the loss of the Ocean Ranger
Ocean Ranger
Ocean Ranger was a semi-submersible mobile offshore drilling unit that sank in Canadian waters on 15 February 1982. It was drilling an exploration well in the Grand Banks area, east of St. John's, Newfoundland, for Mobil Oil of Canada, Ltd. with 84 crew members on board when it sank...

mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) in the process. In the mid-1980s, a new Conservative federal government under Brian Mulroney
Brian Mulroney
Martin Brian Mulroney, was the 18th Prime Minister of Canada from September 17, 1984, to June 25, 1993 and was leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada from 1983 to 1993. His tenure as Prime Minister was marked by the introduction of major economic reforms, such as the Canada-U.S...

 pledged that then Crown corporation Petro-Canada
Petro-Canada
Petro-Canada was a crown corporation of Canada in the field of oil and natural gas. It was headquartered in the Petro-Canada Centre in Calgary, Alberta. In August, 2009, Petro-Canada merged with Suncor Energy, a deal in which Suncor investors received approximately 60 per cent ownership of the...

 (now part of Suncor) would be a lead player in creating a commercially viable offshore development on the Hibernia field. Hibernia would become one of a series of regional "mega-projects
Megaproject
A megaproject is an extremely large-scale investment project. Megaprojects are typically defined as costing more than US$1 billion and attracting a lot of public attention because of substantial impacts on communities, environment, and budgets. Megaprojects can also be defined as "initiatives that...

" that Mulroney's government started across Canada during this time.

Development

Following several years of aborted startup attempts, during which time the federal government was forced to increase its liability stake in the project by forming the Crown Corporation Canada Hibernia Holding Corporation, the Hibernia megaproject began construction of the production platform and gravity base structure in the early 1990s.

The Hibernia offshore oil field is owned jointly by ExxonMobil Canada (33.125%), Chevron Canada Resources (26.875%), Suncor (20%), Canada Hibernia Holding Corporation (8.5%), Murphy Oil (6.5%) and StatoilHydro Canada Ltd (5%).

As the Hibernia field was located in an extremely inhospitable environment consisting of rogue waves
Freak wave
Rogue waves are relatively large and spontaneous ocean surface waves that occur far out in sea, and are a threat even to large ships and ocean liners...

, fog
Fog
Fog is a collection of water droplets or ice crystals suspended in the air at or near the Earth's surface. While fog is a type of stratus cloud, the term "fog" is typically distinguished from the more generic term "cloud" in that fog is low-lying, and the moisture in the fog is often generated...

, icebergs and sea ice
Sea ice
Sea ice is largely formed from seawater that freezes. Because the oceans consist of saltwater, this occurs below the freezing point of pure water, at about -1.8 °C ....

, hurricanes, and nor'easter
Nor'easter
A nor'easter is a type of macro-scale storm along the East Coast of the United States and Atlantic Canada, so named because the storm travels to the northeast from the south and the winds come from the northeast, especially in the coastal areas of the Northeastern United States and Atlantic Canada...

 winter storms, engineering analyses determined that the most appropriate drilling platform would be in the form of a gravity base structure
Gravity base structure
A gravity-based structure is a support structure held in place by gravity. A common application for a GBS is an offshore oil platform. These structures are often constructed in fjords since their protected area and sufficient depth are very desirable for construction...

 (GBS).

The Hibernia GBS sits on the ocean floor approximately 80 metres in depth with its topsides extending approximately 50 metres out of the water. The platform
Oil platform
An oil platform, also referred to as an offshore platform or, somewhat incorrectly, oil rig, is a lаrge structure with facilities to drill wells, to extract and process oil and natural gas, and to temporarily store product until it can be brought to shore for refining and marketing...

 acts as a small concrete island with serrated outer edges designed to counter icebergs. The GBS contains production storage tanks and the remainder of the void space is filled with magnetite
Magnetite
Magnetite is a ferrimagnetic mineral with chemical formula Fe3O4, one of several iron oxides and a member of the spinel group. The chemical IUPAC name is iron oxide and the common chemical name is ferrous-ferric oxide. The formula for magnetite may also be written as FeO·Fe2O3, which is one part...

 ballast
Sailing ballast
Ballast is used in sailboats to provide moment to resist the lateral forces on the sail. Insufficiently ballasted boats will tend to tip, or heel, excessively in high winds. Too much heel may result in the boat capsizing. If a sailing vessel should need to voyage without cargo then ballast of...

 with the entire structure weighing in at 1.2 million tons. The GBS was constructed in Bull Arm
Bull Arm
Bull Arm is a natural arm of approximately 10 miles in length and average of 1 mile wide located at the Isthmus of Avalon on the Avalon Peninsula in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador...

 and the "topsides" production and living quarters was attached to the base while floating in Bull Arm, before the integrated unit (production platform and GBS) was towed out to the actual Hibernia field.

Production commenced on November 17, 1997 and Hibernia has proven to be the most prolific oil well
Oil well
An oil well is a general term for any boring through the earth's surface that is designed to find and acquire petroleum oil hydrocarbons. Usually some natural gas is produced along with the oil. A well that is designed to produce mainly or only gas may be termed a gas well.-History:The earliest...

 in Canada, with initial production rates in excess of 50,000 barrels of oil equivalent
Barrel of oil equivalent
The barrel of oil equivalent is a unit of energy based on the approximate energy released by burning one barrel of crude oil. The US Internal Revenue Service defines it as equal to 5.8 × 106 BTU...

 per day from a single well. A dedicated fleet of shuttle tankers continuously operates between the platform and an onshore transshipment facility at Whiffen Head, adjacent to an oil refinery at Come By Chance
Come By Chance, Newfoundland and Labrador
Come By Chance is a town on the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. It is in Division No. 1 on Placentia Bay.Located in this town is Newfoundland's only oil refinery, the Come By Chance Refinery operated by North Atlantic Refining Company, which has a capacity of .According to...

.

The development of Hibernia involves a considerable amount of drilling services. As of January 1, 2007, over 50 development wells have been successfully drilled from the platform, including several world record "extended reach drilling" wells.

The platform always has at least one logistics support vessel in attendance, which shuttle supplies and provides on-station emergency support. These support vessels are also tasked during the spring and summer months to tow small and medium-sized ice bergs which might collide with the platform, even though the GBS is engineered to withstand such a hit. The crew consists of 280 people who spend 3 weeks on the platform and three weeks on land, flown to and from the platform by helicopter.

From time to time, the platform has been used to refuel search and rescue helicopters on long-range missions in the North Atlantic.

Production

The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Oil Petroleum Board listed the total oil field production at 704 Moilbbl as of August 2010. The same update listed the Proven and Probable estimated reserves as being 1395 Moilbbl of oil.

See also

  • Terra Nova
    Terra Nova (oil field)
    Terra Nova is an oil field development project 350 kilometres off the coast of Newfoundland. Discovered in 1984 by Petro-Canada, the field is the second largest off Canada's East Coast. Terra Nova is the first harsh environment development in North America to use a Floating Production Storage and...

  • Sable Island
    Sable Offshore Energy Project
    The Sable Offshore Energy Project is a consortium based in Halifax, Nova Scotia which is attempting to locate and produce natural gas found near Sable Island on the edge of the Nova Scotian continental shelf in eastern Canada...

  • White Rose
    White Rose (oil field)
    White Rose is an oil field development project 350 kilometres off the coast of Newfoundland. Husky Energy is the operator and 72.5 per cent interest holder in the White Rose oil fields....

  • Canadian Oil Patch
  • History of the petroleum industry in Canada (frontier exploration and development)
    History of the petroleum industry in Canada (frontier exploration and development)
    Canada's early petroleum discoveries took place near population centres or along lines of penetration into the frontier.The first oil play, for example, was in southern Ontario. The first western natural gas discovery occurred on a Canadian Pacific Railway right-of-way...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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