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  • Exxon Kizomba – Traversing Oceans

    ExxonMobil Development Company (EMDC) retained Glosten to develop tow plans for the delivery and hook-up of the Kizomba A floating production storage and offloading unit (FPSO) from Ulsan, Korea, to offshore Angola via the Cape of Good Hope.

    Mitigating Risk

    The 10,000 mile tow over six months presented one of the highest risks to the project. An integrated tow plan was required to address tug capability, cyclones in the Indian Ocean, piracy in the Malacca Strait, safety, remote medical evacuation, and provisioning for a riding crew of nearly 200 mariners and shipyard workers. The installation sequence in Angola required precise coordinated planning between numerous engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractors tasked with mooring installation, final maneuvering, and hook-up.

    Knowing the Risks

    Glosten performed tow simulation analyses to review and evaluate the vessel routing and tow plans. Metocean loads were developed for tug sizing from historical climatology along the route. Tug requirements were developed to determine availability and costs to reduce overall schedule and costs. A cost benefit analysis of options was developed to support the towing contractor selection.

    The magnitude of the Kizomba project required a large team of contractors and agencies to complete the tow including the fabricator, towing and provisioning contractors, the Flag State, warranty surveyor, and Korean and Angolan authorities. Glosten worked as a marine subject matter authority to review and integrate the plans developed by EPC contractors to meet regulatory and owner’s requirements.

    Key risk areas of emergency response during the tow and installation hook-up in Angola were managed through a Glosten-led installation risk assessment and participation in a real-time desktop emergency response drill with participants on five continents.

    Record-setting Results

    The Kizomba program set records for the world’s largest oil development, FPSO size, low unit cost, and completion speed. “Kizomba A and B are benchmark projects that have set with world-record cycle times with the lowest unit development costs for projects of this size and complexity.” 1 The Kizomba A transit from Korea to offshore Angola and final hook-up were executed flawlessly and met the client’s goal to “design one and build multiple.”

    How can we help you?

    Glosten provides a broad range of engineering, analysis, and consulting services to successfully mitigate project risk.


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