China’s deepwater jacket ‘Haiji-1’ starts operation

China's deepwater jacket 'Haiji-1' starts operation

China's deepwater jacket 'Haiji-1' starts operation.

Beijing, The Gulf Observer: China’s homegrown “Haiji-1”, Asia’s first 300-meter deepwater jacket, started operation in offshore areas of South China on Monday, according to the China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC), the country’s top offshore oil and gas producer.

The Haiji-1, located in the Pearl River Mouth Basin, south China’s Guangdong Province, has a total height of up to 340.5 meters, and weighs up to 40,000 tonnes, setting new records of China’s offshore oil production platform and symbolizing a new model in deep-sea oil and gas exploration.

Jackets are structures pinned to the seafloor to support offshore oil and gas production facilities. Before the Haiji-1, China had more than 300 offshore jackets, but all working at a water level of less than 200 meters.

The Haiji-1 will start operation with a daily output of 2,700 tonnes, and then increases to 5,000 tonnes upon completion of all oil wells.

High-tech oriented project

Deng Changhong, deputy general manager of the Shenzhen branch office of the CNOOC, told China Media Group (CMG) that the “Haiji-1 is China’s first 300-meter deepwater fixed jacket. In sharp contrast with previous underwater production systems used by similar oil and gas fields, it enjoys the advantages of low development investment, low production cost, and high localization rate.”

“Its successful operation blazes a new trail for China to develop its medium and deep water oil and gas resources in an efficient and frugal way.”

Wu Yiming, general manager of Lufeng Oilfield under the CNOOC, told CMG that the Haiji-1 is designed to withstand the worst conditions in sea in a century.

“Our team overcame a series of challenges including strong internal waves in the South China Sea, giant sand ripples and sand ridges at the bottom of sea, and accurate positioning of giant structure under water,” said Wu.

“Many technologies were adopted for the first time and our design, manufacturing, operation maintenance and management abilities have been improved in an all-round way.”

China’s path to energy security

In 2012, China’s first independently designed and built sixth-generation semi-submersible ultra-deepwater drilling rig started operation. And in 2021, its first self-run ultra-deepwater gas field Shenhai-1 started production.

“Over the past 10 years, the CNOOC has developed 11 oil and gas fields in the deep waters of the northern South China Sea, including the Liwan 3-1 and the Liuhua 16-2. The deepwater oil and gas production has exceeded tens of millions of tonnes, become a vital guarantee for national energy security,” said Zhao Chunming, general manager of the exploration department of the CNOOC.

Sun Fujie, vice president of the CNOOC, told CMG that “China is now capable of independently developing offshore oil and gas engineering equipment within 300 meters deep. Our technology of homegrown deepwater oil and gas engineering equipment has gradually become world-leading.”

“In the next move, we will focus on developing key technical facilities such as ultra deepwater oil and gas production systems, and cylindrical floating production storage and offloading devices.”

The CNOOC now boasts 66 deepwater ship platforms of all kinds, including 15 operating in a water depth of 1,500 meters.