Pipe-laying vessels.

Philthechill
3rd April 2009, 16:52
In this months Ships Monthly there's a report on one of the latest pipe-laying vessels and I find it very difficult to "get my head round" (to quote a modernisitic expression!) round the concept of "winding" STEEL pipe, from 8" to 16" in diameter onto a monster cotton-reel!

Having worked in Industrial Refrigeration where we would regularly have suction headers of 10" diameter I know just how inflexible pipe of this diameter is and I can't imagine how a continuous length of steel pipe (the 8" pipe laid by this new vessel can be up to 50 kilometres in length!!!!!!) can be "wound" onto a reel without at least kinking.

Do they use a special kind of "soft" steel for these pipes or is the "winding-on" done very slowly in order for the pipe to bend "easily" (surely an academic word in this context!!!!)?

Are there any off-shore members can maybe explain the technology behind this incredible, "going-against-all-the-rules-of-working-with-inflexible-steel-pipe"?

I wait with bated breath!!!! Salaams, Phil(Hippy)

NoMoss
3rd April 2009, 17:04
In this months Ships Monthly there's a report on one of the latest pipe-laying vessels and I find it very difficult to "get my head round" (to quote a modernisitic expression!) round the concept of "winding" STEEL pipe, from 8" to 16" in diameter onto a monster cotton-reel!

Having worked in Industrial Refrigeration where we would regularly have suction headers of 10" diameter I know just how inflexible pipe of this diameter is and I can't imagine how a continuous length of steel pipe (the 8" pipe laid by this new vessel can be up to 50 kilometres in length!!!!!!) can be "wound" onto a reel without at least kinking.

Do they use a special kind of "soft" steel for these pipes or is the "winding-on" done very slowly in order for the pipe to bend "easily" (surely an academic word in this context!!!!)?

Are there any off-shore members can maybe explain the technology behind this incredible, "going-against-all-the-rules-of-working-with-inflexible-steel-pipe"?

I wait with bated breath!!!! Salaams, Phil(Hippy)

Some of the pipes used in the PLUTO pipeline were wound around large floating 'cotton reels' but they were not the same diameter as you mentioned above.

McCloggie
3rd April 2009, 18:45
Must stress that I do not know too much about pipelaying myself, but it could be that the "pipes" you are talking about are flexible flowlines and not traditional steel pipes.

If you have a look at the Allseas web site you will see that their vessels use a stringer. Steel pipe is I think welded up inside the ships hull and then, in one continuous run, pushed/rolled slowly over the stringer and into the pre-made trench.

McC

Les Gibson
3rd April 2009, 21:50
Worked on a lay barge on the Caspian and as McCloggie says the pipe is welded (30' lengths) inside the barge and slowly pushed via the stinger onto the sea bed.

Nick Balls
6th April 2009, 10:04
Im sure there are many more people on this site with better experience on pipe laying but look at:: www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=157170
This is the Apache . We used to work with her on Campos Basin Brazil 25 years ago laying rigid steel pipes. More recently I worked delivering pipes in Northern Norway to the Acergy Falcon also bending some steel!!!!!
The technology has been around a long time and Yes it is amazing !

Geoff_E
6th April 2009, 17:48
Apache is still going strong. I was on her in 2007 for a job in the S. North Sea - laying pipe on DP, beam-on to the tide with an assist tug on a bridle to keep her on the line. Sounds a bit hit and miss, but they're practised at it and it works really well.

Technip have (had?) a much more modern reel-layer, the Deep Blue. Worked on her on the Dalia Project off Angola. She seems to operate mainly GOM, though I've an idea they might have sold her?

Update anyone?

O.M.Bugge
7th April 2009, 12:31
Here is a link to the latest vessel, able to lay coiled pipelines in DEEP water:
http://www.subsea7.com/cms/files/Seven%20Navica%20(VSS).pdf

Subsea 7 has several vessels of this type. Here is a link:
http://www.subsea7.com/v_specs.php

They also have Spooling Bases where the pipe line is welded together and coated in long ''Stalks'', which again can be welded together before being spooled onto the reel on the vessel.

Here is alink to their newest base, at Vigra, Norway:
http://www.subsea7.com/cms/files/Vigra_Spoolbase_(FSS).pdf

The old method of welding 40ft joints together on the deck of a barge and run it out over the stinger (S-Lay) is still the norme for shallow water, but for deep water this does not work. The J-Lay method has therefore been developed and used to lay large diam. pipe (up to 32 Inch) in deep water.
Here is a link to Saipem 7000 with J-Lay tower installed.
http://www.saipem.eni.it/module.asp?sect=flotta&pag=saipem7000

Note: Some large pipelaying barges, like LB 200, do double jointing (I.e. they first weld together 2 x 40 ft. pipes, before going to the fireing line)
She laid part of the Langeled Gas pipeline, from Norway to UK.
Here is a link to an article about that job:
http://www.offshore-mag.com/display_article/234609/9/ARCHI/none/none/1/LB-200-cranes-upgraded-for-mammoth-pipelay

That should suffice to answer your questions about offshore pipe laying, coiled or otherwise.

For those still want more on pipelaying, I found this article, which cover the history of offshore pipelaying from the 1960's to 2000.
http://www.offshore-mag.com/display_article/145517/120/ARTCL/none/none/6/A-pipeline-retrospective:-Innovation-overcomes-costs,-reduces-downtime/

Philthechill
9th April 2009, 21:55
Here is a link to the latest vessel, able to lay coiled pipelines in DEEP water:
http://www.subsea7.com/cms/files/Seven%20Navica%20(VSS).pdf

Subsea 7 has several vessels of this type. Here is a link:
http://www.subsea7.com/v_specs.php

They also have Spooling Bases where the pipe line is welded together and coated in long ''Stalks'', which again can be welded together before being spooled onto the reel on the vessel.

Here is alink to their newest base, at Vigra, Norway:
http://www.subsea7.com/cms/files/Vigra_Spoolbase_(FSS).pdf

The old method of welding 40ft joints together on the deck of a barge and run it out over the stinger (S-Lay) is still the norme for shallow water, but for deep water this does not work. The J-Lay method has therefore been developed and used to lay large diam. pipe (up to 32 Inch) in deep water.
Here is a link to Saipem 7000 with J-Lay tower installed.
http://www.saipem.eni.it/module.asp?sect=flotta&pag=saipem7000

Note: Some large pipelaying barges, like LB 200, do double jointing (I.e. they first weld together 2 x 40 ft. pipes, before going to the fireing line)
She laid part of the Langeled Gas pipeline, from Norway to UK.
Here is a link to an article about that job:
http://www.offshore-mag.com/display_article/234609/9/ARCHI/none/none/1/LB-200-cranes-upgraded-for-mammoth-pipelay

That should suffice to answer your questions about offshore pipe laying, coiled or otherwise.

For those still want more on pipelaying, I found this article, which cover the history of offshore pipelaying from the 1960's to 2000.
http://www.offshore-mag.com/display_article/145517/120/ARTCL/none/none/6/A-pipeline-retrospective:-Innovation-overcomes-costs,-reduces-downtime/Thanks very much for taking the trouble to identify, and put them on here, all those various web-sites------fascinating stuff!!! Again, Many thanks, Salaams, Phil Roe(Hippy)

Blackal
10th April 2009, 06:19
There's a pic of the Kittiwake 10" export line being "pushed" off the reel of the Skandi Navica (now Seven Navica)

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/105156/ppuser/19998

I can't remember the largest diameter pipe the Navica can handle, but if memory serves - it laid around 26Km of 10" pipe on that job.

Saw the Apache last week at Wintershall - gotta be one of the ugliest ships around.

Al

Joe Soap
21st June 2009, 13:07
Hello Gents (and Ladies?)

Although this thread started back in April, having been involved in these pipe
'spooling' operations many times I think I can provide further insight as to what is going on.

As Philthechill says in his original post "I can't get my head round it". Neither
can I, although I've seen it many times.

Phil:- The pipes are (typically) made from normal Carbon Steel and would have an outside diameter from 6" to 16" with a (typical) wall thickness of
17mm. There are exceptions to all these these dimensions etc. But in all cases the pipe is 'bendy'. In the words of Harry Worth (remember him?)
" I don't know why - but there it is."

I think that as the pipeline is being laid there is a residual curve in it which is taken out by 'straighteners' on the vessel's pipelay system.

There are several points and questions raised by other posters which I will answer one at a time rather than try to do it all in one post.

I hope I don't come across as a smartar$e but if anyone has any questions - I might not know the answer, but I 'know a man who does'.

All the best

Joe

JimC
21st June 2009, 18:17
It is all a matter of scale. Think of a short length of steel reinfocing bar - say 100 mm long by an 26mm in diameter. Try and bend it with ease - no way!

Now imagine a length of the same bar 5 metres long lying on the ground. If you lifted one end and the bar it would take the form of a long, gracefull curve toward the end still on the ground.
The same happens with 600mm internal diameter steel pipe. A 10 metre length will not bend but when you start to weld 10 metre lengths together- the longer it gets, the more it becomes like the steel bar example and starts to flex and bend gracefully toward the sea bed. (I think).

JIMMY HAMILTON
21st June 2009, 19:08
Apache is in Leith at the moment,and has been laying pipe off the reel for 30 years, so that would indicate its a successful system....

Joe Soap
21st June 2009, 20:21
Hi Jimmy,

I left Leith a couple or three weeks ago, did see the Apache had arrived but I did not know when she was leaving.

As far as I know there is still a pipelaying phase to do (Shell Bardolino) which is a 2200 metre length which has been produced in one length at Technip's spoolbase in Evanton (near Invergordon). This pipeline is an exception to the specs I stated in my last post. It is 6" outside diameter and the wall thickness is 25mm and it is 25% Chrome Steel and it is still 'bendy'.
I may be out of time now, but I understood in early May that this would be 'spooled on' to the Apache in late June/early July.

All the best

Joe

cueball44
19th March 2010, 17:58
Hi Jimmy,

I left Leith a couple or three weeks ago, did see the Apache had arrived but I did not know when she was leaving.

As far as I know there is still a pipelaying phase to do (Shell Bardolino) which is a 2200 metre length which has been produced in one length at Technip's spoolbase in Evanton (near Invergordon). This pipeline is an exception to the specs I stated in my last post. It is 6" outside diameter and the wall thickness is 25mm and it is 25% Chrome Steel and it is still 'bendy'.
I may be out of time now, but I understood in early May that this would be 'spooled on' to the Apache in late June/early July.

All the best

Joe

what happend to the 'ORCA' pipe layer, inboard section welder? w.hawker ex tugman.(Thumb)

Hawkeye
20th March 2010, 02:06
Some of the pipes used in the PLUTO pipeline were wound around large floating 'cotton reels' but they were not the same diameter as you mentioned above.
The pipes used in the PLUTO operation were made in Corby. They were then transported to the coast, welded together, wound on the drum and deployed. I have a video with this operation, a local history one for the area where I live.

Hawkeye
20th March 2010, 02:16
Some clips on PLUTO
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Pluto
http://yourarchives.nationalarchives.gov.uk/index.php?title=Operational_Pluto_and_the_Supply_o f_Petrol_to_the_Allied_Offensive_1942-1950
http://images.google.co.uk/images?hl=en&rls=com.microsoft:en-gb:IE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7DSGJ_enGB361&q=Operation+PLUTO&oq=&gs_rfai=&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=ECCkS5b2BKT60wTRl8HpCQ&sa=X&oi=image_result_group&ct=title&resnum=4&ved=0CB0QsAQwAw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ylljk8ptWXc

JIMMY HAMILTON
17th July 2012, 09:38
When I made my comment about Apache, was unaware that it was a newer one, but never the less, her predeccesor did the same job, I expect the new one has updated gear tho, and much improved thro the experiance learned with the first one..

chadburn
17th July 2012, 11:06
The pipes used in the PLUTO operation were made in Corby. They were then transported to the coast, welded together, wound on the drum and deployed. I have a video with this operation, a local history one for the area where I live.

Were the pipe's ever recovered for scrap?

JohnMac068
18th July 2012, 15:03
When I made my comment about Apache, was unaware that it was a newer one, but never the less, her predeccesor did the same job, I expect the new one has updated gear tho, and much improved thro the experiance learned with the first one..

The equipment on Apache was transferred to the new Apache 2, so it is still using the original kit.

Julian Calvin
18th July 2012, 15:27
For me, besides the clever stuff with the pipes, it is the work of the Anchor Handling Tugs I find particularly impressive. Have been involved in the past three years with pipe-lay barges in the Gulf of Guinea.
The barges lie to an eight anchor spread and as the pipe is laid move with two AHTs lifting and transferring the anchors. Imagine how many moves this takes with the barge laying around 1.5 kilometres a day.
As the pipeline crosses other lines concrete 'matresses' are laid to protect the lower pipe or bridges are sometimes built.

Duncan112
18th July 2012, 19:32
Going back to PLUTO I remembered seeing the obituary of the lead burner tyhat jointed the pipes printed in the Daily Telegraph some time ago, sadly there is no obituary search on the Telegraph if you don't know the name of the deceased (even if you do it's fraught with problems) so a google got me this

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/1457732/Frank-Stone.html

by way of

http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb/antique-machinery-history/pluto-pipe-line-under-ocean-160309/

and

http://www.combinedops.com/pluto.htm

Totally off topic but possibly interesting to Phil is the story of FIDO

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fog_Investigation_and_Dispersal_Operation

Somewhere I have a copy of Geoffrey Williams' Book "Flying through Fire" about the development of FIDO

JohnMac068
20th July 2012, 16:01
Were the pipe's ever recovered for scrap?

Yes, by a vessel (or barge) named "Redeemer" assisted by the tug "Salvonia".

chadburn
20th July 2012, 16:07
Thanks for the reply and info JohnMac(Thumb)

Tripower
8th August 2012, 18:55
I just found this site doing a search on the Apache pipe lay ship.

You see, I was the main design engineer for the electrical and hydraulic control system for the pipe reel and ramp of the ship in 1977 and 1978. I was very pleased to see it is still in use and seems very successful that they made an Apache II.

I worked for Victoria Machine Works at the time and I must give them credit for manufacturing the system I helped designed. I also was onboard for the sea trials in the Golf when we laid 5 inch pipe to prove the system worked. This was my first time offshore. It was made in Todd Shipyard also.

Lee

ben27
19th April 2013, 02:36
good day,0.m..bugge.s.m.7th april 2009,21,:31.re:pipe laying vessels.a most interesting thread,it has overcome so many difficulcies in the shipping and offloadind,it has been a learning curve for me,thank you for the links and all the information,have a good day.ben27

Norm
19th April 2013, 03:37
If you have ever seen "coiled tubing" as used in the oil industry you would wonder how they can coil and uncoil such seemingly inflexible stainless pipe as well. Its all to do with the power of the hydraulics operating the drum mechanism. Nowadays the trend in sub sea pipe laying is towards flexible armoured hose 'pipes' as manufactured by Coflexip for example. A lote easier to spool up and unspool.