GULF OFFSHORE 2002
El Paso announces LNG breakthrough
Using proven offshore buoy technology to moor the ship and proprietary technology to regasify LNG onboard the ship and discharge it through a subsea pipeline, EP Energy Bridge is claimed to enable flexible, environmentally safe, and cost-effective delivery of natural gas directly to coastal regions eliminating the need for a conventional land-based terminal. This delivery system is expected to be operational and in service by 2005.
An EP Energy Bridge ship connects to pipeline infrastructure through an offshore buoy and turret system that has been used worldwide, including approximately 10 years of service in the harsh weather environment of the North Sea. As the LNG ship arrives at the unloading site, the buoy is pulled into a receiving cone and connected to the ship. The LNG is then regasified aboard the ship and the vaporized LNG is discharged through the buoy into the subsea pipeline system.
Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Company, a Korean shipbuilder, will construct the initial EP Energy Bridge(TM) vessels, which will be owned and operated by a consortium lead by Exmar. El Paso has entered into long-term agreements to charter three EP Energy Bridge ships from the consortium. Delivery of the first ship is expected in the fourth quarter of 2004.
Daewoo Shipbuilding said separately that it has received a $270 million order from Exmar for an additional LNG carrier and to redesign three LNG carriers it is building for the company.
Advanced Production and Loading AS is the designer and manufacturer of the buoy system that will be used in the EP Energy Bridge(TM) ships.