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Optime Subsea conducts first wireless well completion operation

Optime Subsea has successfully tested and qualified a high-speed wireless communication system for completion of subsea wells.

The wireless communication system, part of Optime Subsea’s Remotely Operated Controls Systems (ROCS), was tested at the Wintershall Dea-operated Nova field, which is located about 120 km northwest of Bergen, Norway, in 370-m water depth.

“This is a game-changer for the oil and gas industry, which for 20 years has tried to solve this challenge. For the very first time, the complete wireless installation of the tubing hanger on the subsea tree was accomplished without relying on a wired drill pipe,” said Trond Løkka, Chief Innovation Officer at Optime Subsea.

When completing subsea wells, the tubing hanger is placed on top of the wellhead, as a seal towards the rest of the subsea well. Normally the tubing hanger is controlled through a dedicated hydraulic umbilical that runs from the topside to seabed and adds a large 20-30-ft control container topside. However, Optime Subsea’s ROCS has permanently removed the need for both the umbilical and the topside hydraulic unit, with the obvious cost and environmental benefits this provides.

For instantaneous data transfer from downhole to surface, Optime Subsea had previously relied on a wired drill pipe. The company said that wireless data transmission will help reduce CAPEX investments and operating costs for operators.

“Think wi-fi from topside to seabed, to control well completion operations. We have proven that this is both possible and reliable. In our view, this way of installing tubing hangers on subsea tress will become the new industry standard for subsea well completion operations worldwide because of its substantial cost and environmental savings versus competing methods,” Mr Løkka said.

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