News | June 13, 2019

Shell’s Appomattox begins production

Using TechnipFMC’s high-pressure/high-temperature (HP/HT) full– field subsea solution, Shell’s Appomattox floating production system (FPS) in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico achieved first production early and under budget. 

Shortly after Shell undertook Appomattox’s final investment decision, TechnipFMC was contracted in September 2015 to provide HP/HT rated-hardware including wellheads, 18 subsea trees, four production manifolds, PLET and jumper components, subsea and topsides controls, along with shop/installation tooling suites. 

Click here to see a quick time-lapse video showing the transportation and loading of a subsea tree.  

Appomattox’s equipment was uniquely designed for the specifications of the project, especially the high reservoir temperatures of the Jurassic play. Existing equipment and technology needed to be revaluated and requalified. TechnipFMC worked closely with Shell and the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement throughout this critical, sensitive process. 

A long-time champion of deepwater exploration and production, Shell greenlit Appomattox in 2015, during the worst of the downturn, with first production originally slated for Q3 2019. The FPS started up months early, with Shell reporting cost reductions of more than 40%. TechnipFMC’s execution excellence supported that effort. The Appomattox project builds upon a strong relationship between the two companies that has existed over a period of decades. This close level of collaboration and existing relationship kept the project moving efficiently, contributing to delivering first oil faster.  

Shell says that Appomattox is the first commercial discovery that was brought into production in the Norphlet formation. The operator sees Appomattox as a long-term hub to tieback existing fields and future discoveries. By delivering an HP/HT solution unlike any other, TechnipFMC is proud to have partnered with Shell to enable its success.    

Shell discovered Appomattox in 2010. Located 80 mi (130 km) off the coast of Louisiana in 7,400 ft (2,255 m) of water, it is estimated to produce 175,000 boe/d. Appomattox is a joint venture between Shell, as operator, (79%) and CNOOC Petroleum Offshore S.A. Inc., a subsidiary of CNOOC Ltd. (21%).