U.S. oil chief ExxonMobil is expected to go through the final testing phase of the faulty gas compressor on Liza Destiny’s Floating Production Storage and Unloading (FPSO) ship this week.
“The final phase of testing will take place this week after the temporary removal of instrumentation. The third step involves closely monitoring the machine’s performance in normal, static operation. We will provide an additional update early next week, ”Exxon Government and Public Affairs Adviser Janelle Persaud said in an update on Wednesday.
He explained that the components of the repaired and upgraded flash gas compression system were safely restored, after which the team aboard the Liza Destiny began a comprehensive three-phase testing program.
According to Persaud, the team managed to complete the first two phases over the past few days. These were intended to verify the effectiveness of modifications to the equipment logic and control system.
“Pilot level flares were reached during the tests and a great deal of process and mechanical data was collected,” he added.
In January this year, Exxon had announced that it was experiencing technical problems with the seal on Liza Destiny’s flash gas compressor, which resulted in Exxon having to increase normal torque above pilot levels.
The compressor was sent to Germany for repairs at the manufacturer’s workshop, MAN Energy Solutions, and found that “axial vibration” was to blame for its failure.
However, during that time Exxon had been emitting 16 million cubic feet of gas a day.
Exxon was also announced to produce about 120,000 barrels of oil a day (bpd). Prior to the blaze, production was at 130,000 bpd.
Although some have called for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to take action, their hands are, in fact, tied because the Liza license does not include any penalties for heavy-duty flare-up activities.
Nevertheless, the PPP / C government corrected this in the Payara license including fines and penalties for such activities that have environmentalists up in arms over the damaging effect of a blaze.