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Destination: Brazil

While Norway may be one of the world's smallest nations in terms of population, its global presence is anything but slight. Norway's heavyweight oil and gas industry is a prime example of this, and one of the many international markets in which it is well positioned is in Brazil, an emerging oil power itself.

Norway's domestic oil and gas market continues to provide leading technological advances and research, and these developments are increasingly being employed abroad - so much so that Norwegian competence and expertise has become something of a brand name in the global oil and gas community.

In Brazil, the Norwegian presence has been slowly building for over 40 years. Companies such as FMC Kongsberg have been in Brazil since 1961.

destination400x267.jpg (86066 bytes)Services provided by Det Norske Veritas at Petrobras' P-17 production platform at the Marlim field in Brazil include classification and asset integrity.
© Eliana Fernandes/Petrobras




Norwegian companies exist in almost every aspect of the Brazilian oil and gas industry. While big multinational companies such as FMC Kongsberg have been awarded multiple contracts for large integrated subsea systems, smaller niche companies are pulling their weight as well. An example of this is northern Norwegian company Rapp Bomek, which is exporting its fire doors to the Brazilian market.


Norway's largest manufacturer in advanced-technology fire and explosion-proof doors for the offshore industry, Rapp Bomek also exports its products to Australia, Canada, West Africa, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Korea and the United States.


 Big Boys in Brazil

The big boys in Brazil from Norway include such firms as the aforementioned FMC Kongsberg, Aker Kværner and Det Norske Veritas (DNV). Aker Kværner was awarded a number of major contracts in 2004 by Brazilian oil giant Petrobras. One of these was a $16 million contract awarded in June of that year to Aker subsidiary Kværner Oilfield Products (KOP) for the supply of eleven GLL2000 subsea trees. The trees are designed for use in 2,000 metres water depth and are destined for the Marlim Sul field, offshore Campos Basin. They will exist as tie-backs to Petrobras's new P-15 installation. All eleven trees are scheduled for delivery in 2005.

KOP has won various awards for integrated subsea systems from Petrobras since establishing itself in Brazil in 1995, including a contract for the development and delivery of six subsea x-mas trees for ultra-deepwater in 1997. At the time, this particular technical agreement was the first ever to target oil and gas production x-mas trees for water depths of 2,500 metres.

Meanwhile, FMC Kongsberg has also been very active in the Brazilian market. To date it has provided over 40 percent of all the subsea completions in the Campos Basin, including equipment for water depths of 2,500 metres. It currently has three facilities in Brazil - two in Rio de Janeiro dedicated to engineering and production of equipment, and a Customer Support Centre in Macae that provides technical assistance and maintenance of equipment services.

The deepwater areas of Brazil have seen FMC CBV Subsea, a subsidiary of FMC, break a series of water-depth world records for petroleum exploration and production equipment. For example, in 1999, Petrobras produced the first oil from the giant ultra-deepwater Roncador field through the early production system installed by FMC Kongsberg Subsea. This set a deepwater world record at 1,853 metres.

destination400x320.jpg (129480 bytes)
Advanced Production and Loading (APL) has provided its Stern Discharge Systems to the Brazilian market since 1996.


Another big player in the Brazilian market is DNV, which first set up shop in the country in 1974. DNV's activities initially related to ships-in-operation surveys. The company went on to establish a strong relationship with national oil giant Petrobras and expanded its services in the marine and offshore oil and gas sectors. It is now the leading management systems certification body in Brazil, with a market share of 17.7 percent.


One example of DNV's diverse presence in Brazil is the Appolo 2 project in the Salvador Bahia, where it is supporting 58 petrochemical and industrial companies with safety risk assessment and management. The project involves DNV providing safety training and awareness, identification mapping and assessment of hazards, risk assessments and support in implementation of mitigation measures.

DNV has also been actively involved in research and development projects in conjunction with Petrobras and the University of Sao Paulo. Petrobras is currently using several software solutions in anchor mooring, riser and floater technology that were a result of such projects.

Some of DNV's recent projects in Brazil include verification and classification of Petrobras' new P-51 and P-52 floating production units for Petrobras, and the certification of the PE-3 Pipeline at Guanabara Bay, Rio de Janeiro. The latter was for Transpetro and involved the unique incorporation of risk methodology that linked together design fabrication and operation.

 Niche Companies Making Their Mark

Meanwhile, smaller niche companies have also been very successful in the Brazilian market. Framo Engineering, a company that develops and supplies key components and building blocks for subsea solutions, has won contracts to deliver subsea and topside multiphased meters to Petrobras. It is currently working on developing a multiphased booster pump system and a wet gas compressor in conjunction with the Brazilian oil leader.

Founded in 1993, Advanced Production and Loading AS (APL) entered the Brazilian market later that decade. It is a company that specializes in the development of fabrication and installation systems applied in offshore loading and discharge of tankers and floating production systems.

It introduced the Bow Loading System (BLS) and Stern Discharge Systems (SDS) into the Brazilian market in 1996. The SDS is a means of offloading crude oil into tankers, while the BLS is a means of offshore loading and discharge of crude oil. Both of APL's systems are currently onboard a number of Petrobras' floating production, storage and offloading platforms, including P-33, P-35, P-37, P-43 and P-48.

Today, APL subsidiary APL de Brasil Ltda employs eight people to work in services and business development in its office in Rio de Janeiro. They are involved both in providing support and technical services for the systems aboard vessels in the area as well as for marketing the APL product line.

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Det Norske Veritas has carried out risk and reliability analyses at the Petrobras Landulpho Alves refinery.
© Juarez Cavalcanti/Petrobras












Demo 2000 & Procap 3000 Join Forces

While Norwegian companies clearly already have a very established presence in Brazil, they are continuing to build on it by bringing together their research and development efforts. Procap 3000 is Petrobras' current in-house technological program devoted to the development of ultra-deepwater exploitation systems. Its goal is to bring into production discovered deepwater fields along with finding new fields in water depths of up to 3,000 metres.


Demo 2000 is a separate research and development programme initiated by the Norwegian government to push technological developments on the Norwegian continental shelf and to introduce these to the international market.

Both of these research programmes are now currently working together to potentially pilot new technology in the deepwaters of Brazil. Areas that are currently being reviewed by the two groups include seabed separation, seabed multiphase boosting, composite risers and seabed gas compression. At present there are six companies (see chart for more specific information) that have various products that have been developed in Norway and are under consideration for pilot projects in Brazil. The companies include both larger players and some smaller niche companies. 


Services provided by Det Norske Veritas at Petrobras' P-17 production platform at the Marlim field in Brazil include classification and asset integrity.
© Eliana Fernandes/Petrobras


Advanced Production and Loading (APL) has provided its Stern Discharge Systems to the Brazilian market since 1996.


Det Norske Veritas has carried out risk and reliability analyses at the Petrobras Landulpho Alves refinery.
© Juarez Cavalcanti/Petrobras


Demo 2000

DEMO 2000 was jointly initiated by the oil industry and the Norwegian government, on the basis of the recognition that a major cooperative effort would be needed to bring new products and systems into a market of rapid change, with an increasing emphasis on the reduction of costs related to new field development.

Global energy needs drive the oil industry into pursuing deeper waters, new areas and increased recovery. The industry must meet such needs with clean, safe and reliable supply, which in turn requires new technology. The role of DEMO 2000 is hereby to accelerate the uptake of new technology in the industry by bridging the gap between R&D projects and implementation.

DEMO 2000 focuses on qualification of new technology and solutions in close collaboration with suppliers/contractors, research institutions and oil companies through prototype development and testing, deployment and piloting.

For more details, please see the programme's website - www.demo2000.no

Demo 2000
c/o Research Council of
PO Box 2700 St. Hanshaugen
NO-0131 Oslo, Norway
Tel: +47 22 03 74 40
Fax: +47 22 03 74 61
E-mail: mail@demo2000.no




Norwegian Companies in Brazilian Oil Pilot Projects


 - Riserless mud return system for tophole drilling


- Aker Kværner
 - Composite completion risers
 - Composite tethers
 - MultiBooster
 - Subsea boosting and processing


- FMC Kongsberg Subsea
 - Seabed separation system
 - Subsea wireline well intervention system

-  Framo Engineering
 - WGC2000 Subsea Wet Gas Compressor
- ODIM Alitec
 - Fibre rope deployment system for ultra-deepwater
- Vetco International
 - Drilling composite risers
 - Production composite risers
- Subsea separation



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