The Brent Alpha platform is located in the East Shetland area of the North Sea, 186km east of Lerwick and has been operational since 1976. A 2.7km subsea power cable was installed by Shell in 2002 to export power from the Brent Bravo platform to support Brent Alpha power requirements after its main generation plant was decommissioned.
During the ongoing decommissioning of Brent Alpha, its electrical demand increased to support base load and the plug and abandonment (P&A) activities. This load increase required the upgrade of the existing 1.5MVA 6.6/0.6kV link transformer to a new unit at 2.5/3.5MVA capacity.
We provided engineering support to lead and supervise the offshore commissioning of this new link transformer onboard the Brent Alpha platform. Our work included the presentation of planned works to the relevant platform authorities, witnessing the location and condition of commissioning equipment and tools, co-ordination and leadership of platform and specialist vendor resource during the commissioning activities, and the formal recording of results and findings.
The transformer link was successfully commissioned during the summer of 2016 and enabled the commencement of the well plug and abandonment activities towards the end of that year.