A joint venture work between U.S. engineering contractor KBR and Azerbaijan’s Socar, which is undertaking the engineering design phase of the Azeri Central East (ACE) platform, is now nearing completion.

The ACG field is located about 100km east of Baku and is the largest oilfield in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian basin.

BP, as the operator of the project, made the final investment decision for the $6 billion worth ACE project back in April 2019.

The development includes a new offshore platform and facilities designed to process up to 100,000 barrels of oil per day. The project is expected to achieve the first production in 2023 and produce up to 300 million barrels over its lifetime.

The ACE platform is the first of its kind to be designed through all phases, from concept to FEED and detailed design, to fully utilize KBR’s Digital Twin technology, according to KBR’s statement on Wednesday.

The Socar-KBR JV was awarded two separate FEED contracts for the new production, drilling, quarters platform – the Azeri Central East (ACE) – back in January 2018.

The contracts included the provision of FEED services for the new platform, along with associated brownfield tie-ins to other existing platforms in the ACG field, and a separate contract for the subsea services FEED.

KBR emphasized that the benefits of the Digital Twin continue to be utilized as the ACE platform moves into fabrication and commissioning, which is being undertaken by the client in Azerbaijan.

Digital Twin technology creates a platform to access all project information from anywhere in the world through all phases of execution, KBR explained.

This technology allows users to view procurement status and materials availability, thus enabling 3D, 4D and 5D planning through its reliance on data maturity, resulting in improved performance and reliability.

In the operation phase, the client can leverage the Socar-KBR developed Digital Twin to perform tasks remotely.

This includes site surveys, isolation design, and work sign off, moving traditional offshore activities onshore while delivering real-time operational performance data through the digital representation of the physical asset.

This project is being executed by Socar-KBR in Baku where local engineers are delivering various projects with support from a KBR engineering and data management team located in London.

Yashar Latifov, Socar Vice President for Field Developments and Chairman of Socar-KBR, said: “Our team is leading the way in the journey to digitally transform energy projects in Caspian Region and this project is an important stepping stone in our modernization and transformation initiative”.

Jay Ibrahim, President, Technology Solutions and board member of SOCAR-KBR, said: “Our Digital Twin technology allows our client to execute all steps of the project in a safer and more sustainable way and we’re proud to deliver these benefits”.

In related news, Emerson has recently been awarded a $14 million contract to provide automation technologies for the new Azeri Central East offshore platform.

Under the contract, Emerson serves as the main automation contractor, providing its Project Certainty methodologies and digital technologies that transform capital project execution to help BP bring this fast-track project on stream in 2023.

According to Emerson, its digital twin solutions and cloud engineering services, part of its Project Certainty methodologies, will help accelerate project execution.

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