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Subsea Well Intervention

24 – 27 February 2013

Bangkok, Thailand | Mandarin Oriental Hotel

Technical Agenda

Monday, 25 February, 0830-0930

Session 1: Introduction/Opening/Keynote Address


Session 2: Subsea Well Planning

As the upstream oil and gas industry moves into deeper water, it requires specific competency to develop and operate. In deep water or subsea development, where big platforms installation are impractical, expensive, and not economical, one way is to complete subsea wells with wellheads and Christmas tree that are installed on the seabed and connected to a platform via manifolds and umbilical flowlines. Due to the complexity of the intervention application later, a proper and thorough planning to intervene the well is required with subject matter experts during the field development stage.

This session will discuss the subsea well planning method, with focus on:

  • Subsea knowledge
  • Subsea completion and intervention
  • Contingency plans
  • Subsea well control
  • Facilities planning and design


Session 3: Technology and Operating Philosophy

Various different types of equipment and methods already exist to perform subsea well interventions and the decision on which solution is used will normally be based on some or all of the criteria listed below:

  • Water depth
  • Well type and conditions
  • Type of intervention required
  • Availability of equipment and resources
  • Cost
  • Local regulations
  • Previous experience

In this session, some of the different technologies and operating philosophies will be presented which will allow subsea well interventions to be carried out safely and economically.


Session 4: Subsea Well Control

Well control techniques were developed to provide systematic approaches to control a well during an unplanned wellbore fluids influx event. The developments of these techniques were largely based on field experiences coupled with sound engineering. The advent of subsea production technologies and methods for deep water and marginal fields, coupled with the needs to properly manage the life of field, lead us to believe a new set of methods should be developed. This is to ensure proper well control techniques will be utilised for subsea wells, especially during an intervention operation via vessels other than a Mobile Offshore Drilling Units (MODU). The session will host discussions on:

  • Well control certifications requirements for subsea intervention
  • Well containment tools and engineered methods, field proven techniques, especially for well pressure envelope intervention via multi -services vessel (MSV)
  • Case studies and other concepts


Session 5: Poster Session

Tuesday, 26 February, 0830-1030

Session 6: Subsea Maintenance

As the number of subsea projects and installations increases, so does the need for maintenance of the facilities installed. Today subsea maintenance is increasing its importance as crucial part in integrity and efficiency of oil recovery from subsea wells. The discipline is varied and covers the main following aspects:

  • Maintenance of control systems on production facilities
  • Integrity of production facilities
  • Integrity and maintenance of pipelines
  • Upgrade of production trees and manifolds
  • Sensor upgrade
  • Interfacing with well intervention equipment
  • Flow assurance issues
  • Upgrades on production facilities

This session will focus (but not limited to) on the above topics, considering that they are also key in well interventions success.


Session 7: Technology – Surface and Subsurface

Subsea well intervention has existed in some form or other for decades. This would often be carried out using vessels designed for drilling activities which, although very capable of carrying out intervention work, can be vastly over specified. This resulted in unnecessarily high costs for some subsea well intervention where a vessel with a lower specification would be equally as good for the application. Dedicated vessels with equipment specifically designed for the subsea well intervention market can now carry out these operations with increased speed, and ultimately at a reduced cost than vessels suitable for drilling. When this is combined with subsea equipment designed especially for making intervention easier the result is a much more efficient operation.

This session will expand on the current, new, and emerging technologies being used on the surface, the seabed, and anywhere in-between to carry out subsea well interventions faster, safer, and ultimately cheaper than previously.

Wednesday, 27 February, 0830-1030

Session 8: Future Well Intervention/Vessel for Intervention

The benefits of well intervention are well known globally, but the traditional intervention method using a drilling rig with riser can be expensive and delays valuable well construction programmes. Rigless and riserless intervention, with the use of subsea wireline lubricators and specialist vessels, has proven to be a much more cost-effective and efficient alternative to traditional rig-based methods. 

With the number of subsea wells increasing, economies of scale are increasingly making this the preferred method of intervention. However, in areas with lower numbers of subsea wells, it is important these vessels can perform multiple work scopes to maintain utilisation.

This session aims to look at the typical requirements for and regional availability of such vessels as well as the capability different types of intervention vessels bring including dedicated intervention vessels, vessels of opportunity and heavier CATB vessels that have the ability to run a light riser from surface to the SSXMT.


Session 9: Well Abandonment

When reserves deplete and become uneconomic, the operators pose another challenge to abandon the wells due to environmental concerns and official regulatory agencies, especially in an offshore environment. Today, based on some estimates, there are more than 15,000 wells that qualify for abandonment in the Gulf of Mexico, North Sea, Africa, and Asia. This does not include platform decommissioning and subsea abandonment. As a consequence of high cost offshore operations, especially for subsea wells that requires deepwater drilling vessel, the industry is looking for alternative intervention methods to perform this well abandonment, that can achieve the same objective.This session will focus on:

  • Well abandonment method
  • Subsea well design and abandonment options
  • Intervention without drilling vessel
  • Conceptual method for subsea well abandonment


Session 10: GAP Analysis – Tools

Offshore operation requires a lot of detailed planning due to the nature of the environment and over time, the industry has come a long way—most of the challenges have effective solutions. The evolution of deep water and subsea operation started few years ago, and due to complex environment, the cost of operation is extremely high. These days, when an operator is planning a deepwater drilling operation and subsea well completion, it is a cost conscious practice to plan the well without intervention in the future. But how true it is? Are we really confident that no intervention is needed during the lifecycle of the well?

This session will focus on:

  • Current deep water and subsea intervention practices
  • Resources and competencies
  • Subsea intervention wish list


Session 11: Riser Systems

Riser systems are being used in deeper water, but also in harsher environments every day. With the new computerised riser analysis tools available, more and more risers are being used beyond the standard designs that have been available for years.

The discussions will show the new trends and uses in risers from a design point of view as well as from an operational point. Latest trends and uses of new techniques together with existing and new riser designs will be discussed.


Session 12: Summary and Wrap-up