Woodside teams up with ABB for first offshore application of microgrid solution

Australian oil and gas company Woodside has formalized an agreement with ABB for the installation of a microgrid solution with a lithium-ion energy storage system on the Goodwyn A platform off Australia. 

Woodside said on Thursday that the installation of the PowerStore Battery ESS on Goodwyn A would be the first offshore application of such technology in the world.

The installation of the 1 MWh PowerStore Battery, expected in the second half of 2018, will reduce the need for backup capacity, known as spinning reserve, in Goodwyn A’s power generation system.

More precisely, the PowerStore system will support the platform’s existing gas turbine generators. The battery will replace one of the six existing gas turbine generators and reduce the need for using the emergency diesel generator. Also, a dedicated microgrid control system will act as the ‘brain’ of the solution, and it will be possible to remotely operate it if the need arises or the platform has to be de-manned for any reason.

According to Woodside, Goodwyn A’s use of fuel gas will be reduced by more than 2,000 tonnes per year, allowing for incremental LNG production and delivering an estimated five percent decrease in the platform’s CO2 emissions.

Woodside Senior VP and chief technology officer Shaun Gregory said: “Developing our energy storage capability on Goodwyn A is a first step in enabling Woodside to accelerate scaling of the application in larger oil and gas assets, both offshore and onshore. It is also a clear example of how Woodside is partnering with market-leaders in innovation and technology to deliver against the company’s strategy and business priorities.”

ABB said in a separate statement that its energy solution would contribute to Woodside’s 2020 goal of reducing carbon emissions and help lower cost of operations and maintenance.

Massimo Danieli, head of ABB’s Grid Automation business, added: “We are pleased to partner with Woodside on pioneering a PowerStore Battery energy solution for offshore oil and gas, which will reduce environmental impact and optimize costs. Microgrids and energy storage are key focus areas of our Next Level strategy and this innovative solution reinforces ABB’s position as a partner of choice in enabling a stronger, smarter and greener grid.”

As for the platform, Goodwyn A is located about 135 kilometers northwest of Karratha in Western Australia and has been operating since 1995. The 55,000-tonne production facility is more than 290 meters tall and stands in a water depth of 131 meters.

The platform combines production, re-injection, utilities, and accommodation facilities. Dry gas and condensate from surrounding reservoirs is transported via a network of pipelines to Goodwyn A and then sent on-shore to the Karratha Gas Plant for processing.

Goodwyn A is designed for up to 30 production wells, including five re-injection wells, and has a daily production capacity of up to 36,000 tons of gas and 11,000 tons of condensate.

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