IEM Shout Out – Brief Look at an Offshore Project Journey – Engineering Roles Beyond Detail Design

March 12, 2015

This is a shout out for the IEM. My Technical Division will hosting the above talk by Ir. Tg. Fadziliaton on the 14th  March, 2015. Turn up by 8.30 to obtain nasi lemak.

The talk will gives a brief look on the journey of a typical oil and gas offshore project from FEED, Detail Design, Procurement, Fabrication up to the Commissioning.

Typically, a design engineer involvements is limited to the initial one or two stages of the project before they move on to the next project, more often due to end of their contract. The next stage of project is handled by a different group / team which does not have design engineers from the previous stages.

The design will usually evolve during each stage of the project even right up to the commissioning stage. It is very essential to keep every change to the minimum while maintaining the intended purpose of the design and to ensure a smooth information flow of these changes throughout the project. An awareness of the impact on change to the design beyond detail design stage i.e. procurement and fabrication needs to maintained.

Therefore, the design engineer should be involved and attached to a project up to and perhaps beyond the Commissioning stage, to support the above aims.

The objective of the talk is to familiarize with the stages of a project, the process and challenges of each stages and emphasis the important of information flow and the roles of the design engineer during each stage of the project.

Ir. Tengku Fadziliaton graduated from Loughborough University of Technology with degree in Chemical Engineering in 1997. She has started her career in the upstream oil and gas industry 17 years ago and has experience in detail design, fabrication, commissioning and operation in process engineer capacity. She has involved in projects for wellhead platforms, processing platforms and FPSOs as well as being part of operation support team for the same.

She is currently Senior Process Engineer in Engineering and Commissioning department in Kebabangan Petroleum Operating Company.

Register here, and pick up the brochure here.

Safety Alert – Drowning Fatality

March 19, 2013

Finally, I glimpse a typed out statement of this incident, which means the info is in the public domain. I believe this was related to an asset associated with the letters BUG, offshore Peninsular Malaysia. Curious this never hit the local news, must be slack reporting by our local newhounds, or was there something more sinister in the works?

To quote:

On 13th Sept 2012 an Operations Technician working at a normally unmanned satellite platform in Malaysia drowned when he fell overboard. The victim was the PIC at the site where drinking water bunkering to the platform from a supporting boat was in progress.

The hose from the platform to the boat had been slug over a saddle attached to the platform main handrail. The vessel lost station when its bow thruster tripped.

The Injured Personnel fell 23m into the water when the handrail he was holding failed due to tension applied to it through the loading hose.

The IP was conscious in the water for 10-15 minutes during which efforts to rescue him were unsuccessful. Attempts to throw life rings to the IP from the platform were also unsuccessful.

Emergency response procedures were quickly implemented including dispatching an additional nearby vessel. The IP was recovered but showed no signs of life. The IP was transferred to shore and confirmed to be a fatality due to drowning.

Tales from the Engineering Floor – Myanmar Workforce

July 19, 2012


Old Photos – Guntong D

December 20, 2008

Ah, my first visit offshore after I joined Esso Production Malaysia Inc (note the use of the old name).

What to Bring Offshore

September 14, 2008

I have a team of people going offshore soon. What should they bring offshore along with them, to make their stay more comfortable? What don’t they need to bring, and will be supplied by the onsite catering crew?

  • Toiletries – at least bring a toothbrush and toothpaste. Soap is supplied offshore, but maybe you want to bring your own stuff. If you travel offshore by chopper, there’s none of this ‘put liquids in plastic bag and not more than 500g’ restriction. Also consider if you want to use the towels provided, or bring your own.
  • Telephone services – If you ask the radio operator or OIM (offshore installation manager) politely, you can use the commercial line to get in touch with the office or home (BTW, you might want to give the commercial line number to your family and office so that you are more contactable). Other platforms have a call rota at night, 5 minutes per person to call anywhere you want (I do mean anywhere). An additional service provided at EMEPMI assets is that some phones have been set up such that you can use the iTalk service to call home. Bring a prepaid card.
  • Slippers/Flip flops – Bring a set, as you are not allowed to where your dirty, heavy, manly working boots in the living quarters.
  • Multiport adaptor – If you are bring electronic items offshore, you might want to use one of these to maximise the use of the limited number of free power sockets.
  • Ladies – bring your own items. Note that sleeping quarters are not locked, so expect cleaning staff to barge in at all times.
  • Pens and paper – I usually bring more pens then I need. Pens have a nasty habit of either slipping out of my pockets unnoticed, or waving bye-bye before they slip out and fall through decking into the sea. Is ink toxic? Same goes for paper, a difficult commodity to find offshore. Strangely enough, photocopy machines are a rare breed as well.
  • Cellphones – Some airports (Kerteh) don’t allow you to take your phone offshore. Park it with the friendly man who runs a handphone deposit service there. Other assets (Talisman) allow you take it with you, though they disembowel the thing (remove the batteries) before allowing you to get on board the chopper flight.
  • Ciggies – no sundry shop offshore. Bring your own.

Have fun.

Central Processing Platform, offshore Terengganu, Malaysia

Central Processing Platform, offshore Terengganu, Malaysia

Custody Metering Zen

May 24, 2008

Here’s a dramatically enhanced version of a true story.

An offshore Malaysian oil and gas asset (which shall forever remain nameless unless someone beats the truth out of me) has had some custody metering problems. They have not been able to prove their liquid turbine meters. So, someone from Operations Technical Support goes out to have a look.

The person steps up to the custody metering flow computers, stares at them, becomes one with them, and tells the platform technicians:

“Cool down the computers.”

It turns out that the control room where the computers are mounted and adjoining electrical room have a defective air conditioning system, something about leaking coolent pipes, and the room has been heating up. The flow computers were heated up enough such that electronic errors in the FCs were causing tolerances to be exceeded.

So portable A/C units were directed towards the FCs. Problem solved.

When you reach this level of CT Zen, then you can be called ‘guru’.

Chopper Problems in Kerteh?

April 20, 2008

An unexpected night offshore (Thursday). Not that I’m complaining too hard, considering my colleague and I had been bounced off Tuesday’s flight, and only got on the chopper to Lawit-A at 3pm on the Wednesday. After a quick stop at Dulang-B for a refuel, we reached Lawit-A at 5pm. We were expecting to leave today at 3, but got bounced of that flight due to max pax. So, we now have additional time to carry out our duties, and maximize our client’s funds.

I understand that the chopper situation at Kerteh has worsened lately. I don’t have hard facts, but I have received the following impression from people on both sides of the heli check-in desk:

  • Veteran local pilots are disgruntled because they are earning less than newly minted pilots hired from Indonesia.
  • Pilots are disqualifying aircraft on minor matters. Possibly this might be a reaction to the above situation. This means there are less than planned aircraft available to shuffle grunts back and forth from the offshore assets, as more have been grounded for repairs due to the above disqualification.
  • There aren’t enough engineers to sign off on the repairs done on choppers. Which leads on to the next point:
  • Apparently there has been en mass resignation of the Kerteh maintenance crew. I assume this is because another transport company is willing to pay more for trained personnel than hire fresh faced staff and having to train them. The only other company I know that may want O&G experienced heli staff is Awan Inspirasi. The ‘pay more, instantly staff up’ model has been a norm in Malaysia’s oil and gas arena ever since the independent oil producers showed up.

I sympathise with the Kerteh MHS front desk personnel, who have to deal with all the po faced people waiting for seats, slumping all over the waiting room.

This transport crisis also affects production, as staff booked for travel are not doing it for the pleasure of offshore cuisine (though it’s a benefit), but to do work. Engineers need to be ready for these kinds of hiccups, and ensure that we can keep ourselves busy. Oh, and the Awana Kijal is always fully booked now, but that’s another blog.