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Ichthys LNG celebrates FPSO keel laying

LNG Industry,

The Ichthys liquefied natural gas LNG) project, operated by Inpex, has celebrated a key milestone for its floating production, storage and offloading unit.

The first block of the keel was laid during a ceremony in the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) shipyard in Okpo, South Korea, where the FPSO is currently under construction.


Ichthys Project managing director, Louis Bon, commented: “In a year that will see many major milestones for the Ichthys LNG project, this is a very big moment.

“The FPSO is the facility that will be used for condensate dewatering, stabilization, storage and export – so its importance cannot be overstated. With only a few years until first production, all of our major offshore facilities are taking shape.”

Traditional shipbuilding

Following tradition, a newly minted Australian gold coin was placed under the keel block for good luck. In traditional shipbuilding, keel laying was celebrated because it signified that work had commenced on a vessel. In the case of the Ichthys project, modular construction means that most pieces of the FPSO will have been built into the blocks before keel laying, in order to speed up the process.

These keel blocks will be joined to create mega blocks, which are then lifted, skidded and welded at the DSME shipyard to form parts of the FPSO.

Once the vessel is complete, the facility will be towed 5600 km to the Ichthys Field in the Browse Basin, offshore Western Australia, where it will permanently moored.

LNG offshore facilities

The FPSO is 336 m long, 59 m wide, and is designed to contain over one million barrels of condensate, which will be offloaded to crude oil tankers and shipped directly to global markets.

Work is also underway for all major Ichthys LNG project offshore facilities, including the Central Processing Facility, subsea structures and the gas export pipeline.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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