U.S., Gulf of Mexico Blocks MC 776, 777, 778, 820 and 821
Landmark: World’s first major high-pressure, high-temperature subsea project
The Thunder Horse development is located some 90 miles (150 km) southeast of New Orleans in the Gulf of Mexico and is operated by BP. For the base case, a total of 25 trees are planned over an eight-year period. Development drilling commenced in 2002, and first oil was achieved in 2008. The production facility is a semisubmersible Process Drilling and Quarters (PDQ) vessel, taut-wire moored in 6,300 ft (1,920 m) of water. The vessel has a processing capacity of 250,000 bopd of oil and 200 mmcf/d of natural gas. Oil and gas export is by pipeline.
The subsea production system, provided by FMC Technologies, is designed for 350F (180C) and 15,000 psi and operated via an electro-hydraulic (EH) controls system. The 5"x2" conventional subsea trees and manifolds have HH trim and will be installed in water depths of 5,700 to 6,300 ft (1,713 to 1,920 m). Round-trip pigging capability is incorporated into the manifold architecture. The EH control system includes a subsea distribution system and will incorporate fiber optics for downhole monitoring on later completions.