Friday, 5 August 2011

EPC Commissioning Strategy for Gas Pipeline Project

The transportation of natural gas from fields (offshore) to the distribution station onshore is normally conducted by using pipeline and many types of equipment at each station for gas processing before transferring to end users. In distribution station, Contractor assumes quite complex constructions of pipelines. However, most of Vietnamese Contractors are inexperienced and have no enough resources to perform an entire big gas pipeline project, therefore commissioning activities containing many problems that may cause impact on quality, schedule, cooperation and cost are usually sub–contracted.

Mr. Le Quang Son made a case on Block B - O Mon Gas Pipeline Project which focused on offering co-operation, communication methodology, especially for commissioning phase of entire Natural Gas Pipeline Project and also interface between field owner and main end user. The objectives of his study were to: (1) discuss the existing EPC commissioning phase; (2) identify risk factors in commissioning process; and (3) conduct EPC Commissioning strategy Process for Block B- O Mon Pipeline Project


Generally, in sequence, the project performs from the start of the project until the project is put into operation and handover is preceded. The commissioning process is the last and important stage. This stage will show how well the construction phase was done. How the project quality is met with project technical requirement. Commissioning Process for Gas Pipeline Project is not the exception.

The result of case study showed that “the commissioning process should be considered from engineering stage, cost, plan for resource …etc. and contract between Client/Contractor will concern the above ones”. The risk factor may happen if it is properly identified.

Application to general Gas pipeline project and real Block B – O Mon Gas pipeline project, also, this process stipulates the minimum requirements for the flooding, cleaning, gauging, hydrostatic testing, dewatering, drying and commissioning of station control system and pipeline (offshore/onshore). To make sure that the pipeline has been installed successful. Many factors will be affected to commissioning implementation such as: safety requirement for sea conditions along the pipeline routes to be taken into consideration, there is a long distance from pipeline terminal to the gas-field so, coordination is very difficult between contractor/sub-contractor and vendor/supplier. The mobilization/demobilization of resourses is vast amount. In addition, height safety requirement for petroleum project, the project has negative impact on the environmental of bulky areas along pipeline. Hence, the strict coordination procedure/contact point with local authorities is very important during commissioning implementation.

However, commissioning activities are not easy to control due to the specification commissioning strategy for pipelines project.


The report shows the status of existing gas pipelines in Vietnam and Block B- O Mon pipeline project which is under development, the advantage/disadvantage of EPC contract in general and how to apply in Block B- O Mon pipeline project. The commissioning is a process that should be considered as contraction phase if the project is targeted to run efficiently. Based on the general project commissioning process, the report concerning the real status of project and propose the commissioning project strategy for Bloc B- O Mon pipeline project as well.

The recommendations for management of commissioning process are as follows:
o It is important to have a good plan not only for commissioning work but also for the whole construction phase which reduce the too many interfaces. In this case, the Client signed a contract to hire telecommunication service with Vietnam Telecom International (VTI) who will take interface between offshore topside and onshore control system and license of telecom equipment also.

o The cost for commissioning phase will be concerned during engineering cost estimating stage.

o The detail plan mobilization/demobilization necessary equipment for work must be arranged probably. Review the quality document and certificates completed with conformance, inspection of materials and equipments are also necessary.

o It is essential to have detailed internal/external cooperation procedure of commissioning requirement. The organization chart/contact point with internal and external must also clear.

His thesis abstract is copied and posted.


Oil and Gas projects have been continuously building to get the oil/gas from offshore fields to shore for energy industrial. The transportation of gas from fields (offshore) to the shore is normally by using the pipeline. The Gas Pipelines constructions are quite difficult perform so the commissioning activities for gas pipeline project are difficult more than, that cause of low quality, delay and over cost of project. In some case, the risk occurrence leads to delay the whole project complex. The negative impacts to project (cost and schedule) at CLIENT and CONTRACTORS, or even serious disputes between the involved parties could be raised if no precautions are undertaken.

Commissioning phase is an important part of the decision-making cooperation procedure of all partners who will involve responsible to project. Quality of project don’t met quality requirement of premise target set up and uncertainty can potentially have damaging consequences for some construction projects. Risk can affect productivity, performance, quality, and the budget of a project. Risk cannot be eliminated, but it can be minimized, transferred or retained (Burchett, 1999).

In this report, a EPC commissioning strategy phase of gas pipeline project is presenting.


Daniel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mushtaque Hussain said...

Does the inert gas in flown through the newly constructed gas transmission pipeline before commissioning, to dehydrate and dry line completely