Seven new projects for the Abandonment programme

New studies: A Second Life for Offshore Oil and Gas Infrastructure

Tuesday 22 Sep 20


Charlotte Nørgaard Larsen
Programme Manager
Centre for Oil and Gas - DTU
+45 93 51 15 36

Is there a second life for the offshore oil and gas infrastructure after cessation of oil and gas production? That question is about to be answered through seven new feasibility studies that DHRTC has started.

DHRTC has kicked-off 7 feasibility studies looking into the potential of giving the offshore infrastructure a new life with focus on energy generation, energy storage, and CO2 storage. The 7 projects will run over 4 months in the autumn of 2020 and it is hoped that the outcome will help inspire the industry when deciding the fate of the offshore infrastructures.

Over time a significant amount of oil and gas infrastructures have been built in the Danish part of the North Sea. When the time comes to cease the oil and gas production this infrastructure becomes obsolete and will have to be removed.

Is there, however, a potential for part of the infrastructure to continue to play a role in the energy grid in Denmark after the transition to non-fossil fuels? If there are opportunities for a second life, it will be important to understand the reuse scenarios before decommissioning the offshore wells, platforms, etc. is initiated.

Energy Generation

Two of the feasibility studies are looking at generating energy on the offshore facilities. One project is looking into offshore geothermal energy and whether the temperature in the DUC fields is high enough to create electricity. The other project is looking at the feasibility of generating electricity from H2S in the reservoir.

Energy Storage

Two of the feasibility studies are looking at the potential of storing energy in the depleted oil and gas reservoirs. This is based on the assumption that there will be an increase in the number of offshore windmills and that in periods there will be excess electricity.

One project will look into storing energy as either hydrogen, methanol, ammonia, methane, and compressed air, and identify pros and cons for each of the 5 methods focused on the DUC specific conditions and energy balances.

The other project looks further in-depth at using hydrogen to store energy in the oil and gas reservoirs and identify the waste reactions and how these potentially can be mitigated.

CO2 storage

Two very different projects are looking at CO2 storage in the old oil and gas reservoirs. One project is looking at the cap rock and how to establish a probabilistic risk assessment of the cap rock integrity. The other project looks at developing a test set-up, which can test pipe for CO2 corrosion under actual reservoir conditions.

The feasibility studies will run until the end of 2020 and an overview of the results is expected in early 2021.

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