TANGGUH LNG, PAPUA
Working for BP Indonesia Tangguh LNG
After about 22 years working for PT Badak NGL, Bontang, East Kalimantan, I decided to take the offer from BP Indonesia to start a new career as an Operation Manager of Tangguh LNG Plant. It was in March 2006 when I had the interview. I started my career at BP Indonesia in August 2006. At that time Tangguh LNG facility was still under construction.
I had an office in Arkadia Jakarta where I started to build Operation Readiness Plan. I started with developing organization capability and helping other team about LNG operation.
When we have Team Leaders and Supervisors onboard, we started developing operating procedures. Deployment to LNG Site Tangguh was started in March until July 2007. At this time, commissioning has just been started. Operation team was involved intensively in the commissioning activities such as piping internal cleanliness inspections, leak testing, instrument check. The start-up was delayed due to Alphacon valves which were found had casting problem on the body. We replaced 1600 valves in 6 months. BP must sourced-out the replacement valves from all over the world and sent them by military airplane Antonov.
If you are interested to learn more about how we build Tangguh LNG Operation team, just go to "Our Blog" or search using keyword: "Building Tangguh LNG Operation Team".
First Deployment to LNG Site
Starting in March 2007, the first operation team was deployed to LNG site. They are the gas supply, offshore team. The assignment was to liase with construction, drilling, and well completion team during the platforms construction, drilling and hook-up campaigns.
In July 2007, all operation team started deployment to LNG site. The construction was at peak during this time. It increased from 7.000 personnel on board (POB) to 10,000 POB in December 2007.
The Dormitory was still under construction. The completion delayed till March 2008. Operation team had to stay at temporary buildings which was called "Blue Sky".
The mess hall was a big temporary building to accommodate almost 5,000 people lunch or dinner at the same time. One can imagine how difficult to provide good quality lunch or dinner menus. Often people just skip dinner by taking instant noodles to the room and cook it at the temporary barrack room.
Early Life of Tangguh LNG Plant
This picture was taken from Perwira Perkasa Barge at Bintuni Bay, Papua during well hook-up campaign of VRB platform on November 6, 2007. The two platforms (VRA and VRB) were built for Tangguh LNG Plant operated by BP located at Bintuni Bay approximately 16 km north of the LNG site.
Each platform is connected to shore with 24" pipeline having a capacity of 1700 MMSCFD. Tangguh LNG plant is already achieving name plate capacity production in 2011.
First Boiler Running
Boiler-A was the first boiler put in service in November, 2007 to support commissioning activities. To supply the fuel gas we use only one well from VRB-1 by pressure pumping. That is we increase pipeline pressure to maximum and we increase again the next day when the pressure had reduced. We have to do this because the fuel gas requirement is still very low.
There is other risk we must manage because of this low consumption of fuel gas. The feed gas flow is so low that it accummulates considerable amount of liquid along the pipeline. As gas travels through the pipeline under the sea, it gets cooled forming liquids. So, we did a sweeping using pigging.
First Operation of Employee Dormitory
March 15, 2008 was the date when we first occupied the Dormitory, the Central Building (Mess Hall), and the Administration Building (Office).
This photo was taken during a courtesy dinner held by Tangguh LNG General Manager with the Contractor, KJP Management and BP Construction Team.
The Central Building
Fitness center is available at the Central Building nearby the Dormitory.
Next to this room is recreation room where people can play bilyard, singing karaoke or watching television.
First Gas Brought into Tangguh LNG Site
It was May 19, 2008 at around 03:43 am when gas from VRB safely brought into the Tangguh LNG Site located south the Bintuni Bay.
The gas was sent to the Wet Flare before it was used to support commissioning activities. First usage of the gas is for boiler fuel. Next it will be required for solo run and N2 run of Gas Turbine of Train-1.
It was in March 2005 when the Government of Indonesia gave the go ahead for Tangguh LNG Project at Bintuni Bay, West Papua. The name is taken from the Indonesian word for "resilient and strong". Tangguh is located around seven hours flight from Jakarta to the east. BP Indonesia is the operator of Tangguh LNG with 37.16% interest in the project, under a production sharing contract with BPMIGAS (Indonesia's regulatory body for oil and gas upstream activities).
The project was planned to be completed in October 2007 with a loan agreement totaling US$3.5 billion. Several international banks were collaborated to finance the development of the LNG plant. Total project costs was US$ 5.5 billion.
Project location and dimensions
The Project involved the tapping of six fields to extract combined proven reserves of around 14.4 trillion cubic feet of clean gas. Two normally unmanned offshore production platforms located in Bintuni Bay collects gas from the reservoir, then send it through sub-sea pipelines to an LNG processing facility on the south shore. From here, LNG goes to energy markets using LNG tankers.
The LNG processing plant consists of two ‘trains’ (the units that purify and liquefy gas), producing at least 7.6 million metric tons of LNG a year. Other facilities at the site includes storage tanks, an LNG tanker loading terminal, as well as maintenance facilities, offices and a personnel accommodation complex.
The Tangguh LNG plant has secured long term LNG sales to four customers, i.e: the Fujian LNG project in China, K-Power Co., Ltd in Korea, POSCO in Korea and Sempra Energy LNG Marketing Corp. in Mexico. Currently the third train LNG project is underway to expand plant capacity to support new sales commitment.
The Tangguh LNG Project provided an innovative approach to sustainable development, cultural preservation and biodiversity conservation. From the outset, this huge undertaking had been designed and implemented with a number of key principles in mind: community, partnership, consultation and corporate responsibility.
I found this video about Tangguh LNG from Youtube by Yohanis Anari. The 3D film is quite different than the actual installation offshore. The platforms called VRA and VRB are design as a normally unmanned installation. The principle of inherently safer design is applied. Among others are the spacing is such that it minimizes escallation of damage or explosion in case of gas leak and fire. The gratings are also design to disperse gas such that it will be less likely to cause explosion if get ignited. The pipeline risers are installed in between the platform structure to minimize risk of being hit by boats or ships. There is no accommodation and chopper landing provided.