dcsimg Minimum-facility platforms - Ramboll Group

Minimum-facility platforms

Cost-efficient exploration of marginal fields is at the top of the agenda for many operators in the oil and gas industry. The cost-effective minimum-facility platform is a good alternative to the traditional wellhead platform or subsea installation. It is normally unmanned, and acts as a satellite with power, chemicals, utilities and controls being supplied by a host.

Experts on minimum-facility platforms

The design of minimum-facility platforms is one of Ramboll’s core competencies.  Since the 1980s, we have designed a significant number of minimum-facility platforms for such diverse environments as the Gulf of Mexico, the Arabian Gulf and the North Sea
Our services within minimum-facility platforms cover:
  • Field development assistance from conceptual studies and FEED to detailed engineering
  • Design optimisation of steel-structures
  • Design optimisation of layout
  • Design of associated pipelines
  • Brownfield modifications to host platform
  • Assistance with third party/authority verification
Cecile unmanned wellhead platform

A ‘necessities only’ philosophy

The philosophy behind Ramboll’s minimum-facility platform is to use simple and robust technology which requires a minimum of manual operation and maintenance. Key characteristics are:
  • Designed for remote control
  • Normally unmanned
  • Intelligent and simple layout – necessities only
  • Simple and reliable equipment solutions with low maintenance requirements
  • Replacement rather than repair
  • Reducing steel weight
Model of minimum facility platform

Unmanned operation increases safety and reduces costs

By keeping the minimum-facility platform unmanned, we are reducing the risk to personnel while reducing costs. Robust equipment means fewer maintenance campaigns. This will keep OPEX down and also allow for alternative modes of access. Access via boat or telescopic gangway eliminates both costs and risks associated with helicopter access.

Valhall South Flank unmanned wellhead platform

Minimalist topsides design with maximum return

All process facilities that are not required for transfer of well stream to the pipeline are eliminated. We call it the scaled-down topsides, characterised by:
  • A minimum of process and utility components
  • A minimum of hazardous material
  • Hand-held firefighting equipment and self-contained units
  • Remotely controlled control/F&G/ESD systems
  • A minimum of mechanical equipment requiring statutory periodic inspections/re-certification
  • Portable equipment stored on the support vessel
Mustang unmanned wellhead platform

Optimised steel design reduces CAPEX

Applying advanced design and calculation tools, Ramboll is able to optimise the structural design and reduce steel volume while still adhering to all safety and regulatory requirements.

The result is a robust, low-weight, and easy-to-fabricate structure, which is easily installed at different water depths.

Tyra South East A unmanned wellhead platform


Jesper Thomsen
Director, Business Development, North Sea
T+45 5161 2375
Dag A. Nilsen, Ramboll Oil & Gas
Director, Business Development, Norway
T+47 488 93 227
Lars Mogensen
Lars Mogensen
Director, Business Development, Middle East
T+974 5512 7157
Balaji Swaminathan
Balaji Swaminathan
Director - Oil & Gas India
T+91 44 4386 7000