Buzios is a super-giant ultra-deep-water pre-salt oil and gas field located in the Santos Basin off Brazil's Southeastern coast. There are four production systems already installed in the field. Designed to use flexible pipes to tie back the production and injection wells to the FPSOs (Floating Production Storage and Offloading), these systems have taken advantage from several lessons learned in the previous projects installed by Petrobras in Santos Basin pre-salt areas since 2010. This knowledge, combined with advances in flexible pipe technology, use of long-term contracts and early engagement with suppliers, made it possible to optimize the field development, minimizing the risks and reducing the capital expenditure (CAPEX) initially planned.
This paper presents the first four Buzios subsea system developments, highlighting some of the technological achievements applied in the field, as the first wide application of 8" Internal Diameter (ID) flexible production pipes for ultra-deep water, leading to faster ramp-ups and higher production flowrates. It describes how the supply chain strategy provided flexibility to cover the remaining project uncertainties, and reports the optimizations carried out in flexible riser systems and subsea layouts.
The flexible risers, usually installed in lazy wave configurations at such water depths, were optimized reducing the total buoyancy necessary. For water injection and service lines, the buoyancy modules were completely removed, and thus the lines were installed in a free-hanging configuration. Riser configuration optimizations promoted a drop of around 25% on total riser CAPEX and allowed the riser anchor position to be placed closer to the floating production unit, promoting opportunities for reducing the subsea tieback lengths. Standardization of pipe specifications and the riser configurations allowed the projects to exchange the lines, increasing flexibility and avoiding riser interference in a scenario with multiple suppliers.
Furthermore, Buzios was the first ultra-deep-water project to install a flexible line, riser, and flowline, with fully Controlled Annulus Solution (CAS). This system, developed by TechnipFMC, allows pipe integrity management from the topside, which reduces subsea inspections.
As an outcome of the technological improvements and the optimizations applied to the Buzios subsea system, a vast reduction in subsea CAPEX it was achieved, with a swift production ramp-up.