Hoists are an integral piece of equipment on FPSO’s, used to manoeuvre equipment both on and around the vessel. A hydraulic overhead crane hoist provides the material handling operations
in these heavy loads and harsh environment.
Bardex Corporation, headquartered in Goleta, California, was contracted to design and build the mooring system for an Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel ordered from Elf Petroleum Nigeria, Ltd. (EPNL), a Nigerian subsidiary of French Oil company Total S.A., and contracted through Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI). A number of overhead cranes were evaluated before Bardex concluded that J D Neuhaus’ hydraulic overhead crane was the best option.
The FPSO vessel is used as a temporary storage unit for oil or gas from offshore production platforms before it is subsequently transported by a pipeline or oil tanker to the store depot. An integral piece of equipment on FPSO’s are the hoists used to manoeuvre equipment both on and around the vessel. Subject to heavy loads and harsh environments, the JDN hoists provide an essential ‘strongest link’ in these material handling operations.
Instead of procuring 16 separate chain jack tensioning systems (four per corner of the
FPSO and each rated at 18 tonnes), it was determined that one unit per corner could be used and a system of four overhead cranes used to move one chain jack tensioning system for use in all four corners of the FPSO. Additionally, the specially designed mooring system included sixteen fairlead stoppers each weighing in at almost 25 tonnes.
A system like this had never been built before, and JDN was the only crane builder in the world capable of supplying it to specification and on time. It comprised a hydraulically powered overhead crane with a hoist lift capacity of 18 tonnes, designed to withstand daily ocean environmental conditions with a high atmospheric moisture content.
The J D Neuhaus company have a long established reputation for the design and manufacture of materials handling products. They also supply purpose designed equipment for specialised applications such as the oil and gas industry where safety and reliability are primary requisites.
For this purpose they supplied hoists, with a lift capacity range from 0.25Kg up to 100 tonnes, to API7K certification. These are high durability products rated explosion proof/spark resistant and powered by compressed air or hydraulics with corrosion resistant options also available. Customised lifting and control systems can be accommodated with load test certifications available through DNV, ABS, Lloyds and others. Typical land based or offshore equipment loads include BOP handling, FPSO vessel mooring/tensioning together with a wide range of general materials handling requirements on jack-up rigs, semi-submersibles, drill ships etc. Specialised hoist applications have also been developed for operation in low temperature ‘cryogenic’ conditions, together with hoists for subsea operation down to levels of 70 metres.