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View from the service vessel bridge with process vessel on portside and intervention vessel ahead


MARIN USA helps HWCG plan emergency response requiring well flowback


Numerical analysis and bridge simulation are being used to develop a deepwater containment response system to ensure that there will never be a repeat of the Deepwater Horizon incident.


T Arjan Voogt a.voogt@marin.nl 22 report


he Helix Well Containment Group LLC (HWCG) is a consortium of 16 deepwater operators. HWCG was


founded in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon event with the mission to develop a comprehensive and rapid deepwater containment response system for the Gulf of Mexico. HWCG worked with MARIN USA to study storage and offloading aspects of the containment system in a cap and flow scenario. Numerical analysis and bridge simulation work carried out by MARIN’s office in Houston helped determine the feasibility and operating limits for loading and offloading operations, as part of an emergency response to a well blowout requiring flowback.


Subsea blowout response Two dual ram capping stacks are the core components


of HWCG’s subsea incident response system. These capping stacks can be deployed to effectively shut-in and contain a subsea blowout. In a situation where extreme well pressure may prevent a complete shut-in, a flow and capture containment system will be deployed. Using the flowback method, hydrocarbons are collected and safely transported via risers and flow lines from an intervention vessel to a process vessel, and via marine hoses to a storage vessel on the surface.


Both the process vessel and intervention vessel are station keeping with dynamic positioning (DP) systems, and all support tugs are DP2 class. The storage vessel is not DP but instead, is held at position by two DP2 tugs at the bow and a holdback tug at


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