Submerged, Buoyant Wellhead Or Riser Patents (Class 166/350)
  • Patent number: 10399647
    Abstract: In an amphibious or flotational device for supporting one or more submersible pumps, the flotational device is structurally configured to provide the means for enabling both static and dynamic positioning of the submersible pumps at selected depths below the flotational device, and to provide means for improved pay-out and storage of flexible piping that enables improved dynamic positioning of the submersible pumps.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2019
    Assignee: WEIR CANADA, INC.
    Inventors: Stuart M. Armstrong, Gina Succi
  • Patent number: 10385624
    Abstract: A bend stiffener for resisting excessive-bending of an elongate underwater member in a region where it meets a rigid structure, comprises: a sleeve (1) for receiving said elongate underwater member, said sleeve being capable of some degree of flexure; and a rigid interface mount (3) secured to said sleeve, said rigid interface mount being suitable for attachment to said rigid structure; wherein said rigid interface mount comprises one or more slots (4) or holes which are alignable with corresponding slots, holes or recesses on said rigid structure such that the rigid interface mount may be locked to the rigid structure by locking means (2), said locking means comprising projection(s) through the slots or holes of the rigid interface mount into the slots, holes or recesses of the rigid structure. The bend stiffener is particular suited to mid-line applications, amongst other applications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: Trelleborg Offshore UK Limited
    Inventors: John Malachy Duggan, Austin Harbison
  • Patent number: 10370904
    Abstract: An installation of bottom-to-surface connections of at least two undersea pipes (11-1, 11-2) resting on the sea bottom (10), and a rigid pipe (1-1, 1-2) constituted by a vertical riser having its bottom end (1a) fastened to a base (9-1, 9-2) at the sea bottom (10), and having its top end (1b) tensioned by an immersed float (4-1, 4-2); and a flexible connection pipe (2-1, 2-2) providing the connection between a common floating support (12) and the top end (1b) of the vertical riser via a junction device (3-1, 3-2; wherein two hybrid towers are connected together by at least one rigid separator bar (5) having a length not less than the diameter of the larger-diameter float.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: Saipem S.A.
    Inventors: Giulio Fatica, Gianmarco Rota, Roberto Palladini
  • Patent number: 10323665
    Abstract: A flow modification device connectable to a generally cylindrical element adapted for immersion in a fluid medium, the device comprising an elongate body having a length and a generally circular cross-section; a plurality of raised body portions disposed about and extending along the length of the elongate body, the raised body portions being arranged generally parallel to a longitudinal axis of the body and having a height between 2% and 10% of a diameter of the body; and an aperture extending through the length of the elongate body, the aperture being adapted to receive the generally cylindrical element such that the flow modification device is arranged about the cylindrical element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2019
    Inventors: Andrew Elmhirst Potts, Hayden Marcollo
  • Patent number: 10294737
    Abstract: A system, including one or more supports. The system also includes a movable platform slidingly coupled to the one or more supports and configured to be selectively moved towards a drill floor and away from the drill floor. The system further includes a roughneck disposed on the movable platform and configured to make up or break out a threaded joint between a first tubular segment and a second tubular segment, wherein the roughneck is configured to be selectively movable along the movable platform from a first position disposed adjacent to the one or more supports and a second position disposed adjacent to the first tubular segment and the second tubular segment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Inventors: Christopher Scott Stewart, Richard Robert Roper
  • Patent number: 10233606
    Abstract: A pile top assembly includes an adapter configured to couple to an upper end of a subsea anchor, a tensioning system mounted on an upper end of the adapter, and a flexible tension member having a first end coupled to the tensioning system. The tensioning system is operable to pay in and pay out the flexible tension member relative to the tensioning system. The pile top assembly further includes means coupled to the adapter for selectively engaging the upper end of the subsea anchor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2019
    Inventors: Elizbar Buba Kebadze, John D. Henderson, James V. Maher, Mario Lugo, Brent Cox
  • Patent number: 10190380
    Abstract: Embodiments of a method for monitoring an annular packer are provided herein. In some embodiments, a method for monitoring a sealing element of a blowout preventer may include providing a fluid to a chamber disposed within a blowout preventer to actuate a piston disposed within the chamber, wherein the actuation of the piston causes a reduction of an inner diameter of a sealing element; measuring one or more parameters of the fluid via a sensor; receiving data relating to the one or more parameters from the sensor; determining a stiffness of the sealing element utilizing the data relating to the one or more parameters; and determining an amount of degradation of the sealing element by comparing the determined stiffness of the sealing element to a known data profile.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2019
    Inventors: Deepak Trivedi, William Lyle Carbaugh, Gregory Ronald Gillette, Joseph Alan Incavo, Weina Ge
  • Patent number: 10174566
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present disclosure include a riser tensioner includes a cylinder barrel, a rod reciprocally carried within the cylinder barrel and having an external end sealingly extending out of a proximal end of the cylinder barrel, and a piston on an interior end of the rod that slides and seals against an inner surface of the cylinder barrel. The tensioner further includes a selectively sealed low pressure chamber in the cylinder barrel between the piston and a distal end of the cylinder barrel and fillable with a low pressure fluid, and a selectively sealed annulus between the rod and the cylinder barrel, the annulus extending between the piston and the proximal end of the cylinder barrel and fillable with an annulus fluid at a pressure higher than the low pressure fluid, thereby urging the piston and rod towards retraction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 16, 2017
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2019
    Assignee: Vetco Gray, LLC
    Inventors: Benjamin James Kubichek, Joseph William Pallini, Jesse B. Riha, Daniel Louis Havelka, Robert James Wagner
  • Patent number: 10156101
    Abstract: A marine riser system, a buoyancy system, and a method of buoying a body. A riser joint includes a body, a buoyancy module, a thrust collar, and a reaction collar. The buoyancy module is coupled around the body and configured to produce a buoyant force when submerged at a subsea location. The thrust collar is coupled around the body and engaged with the buoyancy module to transfer the buoyant force to the body. The reaction collar is engaged with the body such that movement of the buoyancy module is restricted by the reaction collar.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 18, 2018
    Assignee: Cameron International Corporation
    Inventor: Jim Britton
  • Patent number: 10094177
    Abstract: A marine riser includes at least two riser sections which are connected in an end-to-end relationship. The at least two riser sections extend between a subsea installation and a suspension device arranged above the subsea installation. At least one of the at least two riser sections includes at least one pipe having a heat exchanger.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Inventors: Boerge Bjoerneklett, Per Martin Erik Hansson, Henrik Alfredsson, Niklas Persson
  • Patent number: 10072675
    Abstract: A system includes a mud return system. The mud return system includes a pressure exchanger (PX) configured to be installed in a body of water, to receive used drilling mud, to receive a second fluid, to utilize the second fluid to pressurize the drilling mud for transport, via a mud return line, from a first location at or near the sea floor to a second location at or near a surface of the body of water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2018
    Inventors: James Elliott McLean, Jr., Farshad Ghasripoor, David Deloyd Anderson, Jeremy Grant Martin
  • Patent number: 10053920
    Abstract: A riser system with a primary conduit extends between a surface vessel and a subsea location and an auxiliary conduit that extends adjacent the primary conduit. In one example a composite jumper conduit extends from the surface vessel and is fluidly connected to the auxiliary conduit. The jumper conduit includes a composite material formed of at least a matrix and one or more reinforcing elements embedded within the matrix. In one example a subsea composite jumper conduit extends from subsea infrastructure and is fluidly connected to the auxiliary conduit. The subsea jumper conduit includes a composite material formed of at least a matrix and one or more reinforcing elements embedded within the matrix.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 31, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2018
    Assignee: Magma Global Limited
    Inventor: Stephen Anthony Hatton
  • Patent number: 10053928
    Abstract: An offshore drilling vessel includes a floating hull subjected to heave motion. The hull includes a moonpool and a drilling tower near the moonpool. A drilling tubulars storage rack is provided for storage of drilling tubulars. The vessel includes a heave motion compensation support that is adapted to support a slip device while performing heave compensation motion relative to the heaving motion of the vessel. A racking device is provided with a heave motion synchronization system that is adapted to bring a tubular retrieved from the storage rack in heave motion into a vertical motion that is synchronous with the heave compensation motion of the string slip device. The racking device includes vertical rails and at least two separate motion arm assemblies mounted on said vertical rails. Each separate motion arm assembly includes its own vertical drive which is electrically connected to the heave motion synchronization system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2018
    Assignee: ITREC B.V.
    Inventors: Joop Roodenburg, Diederick Bernardus Wijning
  • Patent number: 10006254
    Abstract: Embodiments disclosed herein describe cylindrical structures with indents configured to reduce vortex induced vibrations (VIV). For example, the cylindrical structures may be configured to reduce VIV for drilling risers subject to ocean currents. In embodiments, the indents may be positioned on an outer surface of the cylindrical structures, wherein the indents may be parallel pairs. The pairs may be mirrored between a first end and a second end of the cylindrical structure, and be positioned in a helical pattern, which may be continuous or staggered.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2018
    Assignee: CBM International, Inc.
    Inventor: Shan Shi
  • Patent number: 9896888
    Abstract: Apparatus and method for supporting a riser are disclosed. The apparatus includes an anchoring element for anchoring a riser to a fixed structure, and a supporting portion configured to support a section of flexible pipe, the supporting portion having a bearing surface for the section of flexible pipe to bear against to thereby restrain the flexible pipe from upward movement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: GE Oil & Gas UK Limited
    Inventors: Zhimin Tan, Yanqiu Zhang, Yucheng Hou
  • Patent number: 9822761
    Abstract: A method of manufacturing is presented. The method includes providing a plurality of structural layers comprising a plurality of composite rods, wherein at least one structural layer from the plurality of structural layers is attached to a separation layer. The method further includes stacking the plurality of structural layers, detaching the separation layer from the at least one structural layer, and curing the plurality of structural layers to form a structural component of a wind turbine blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Thomas Merzhaeuser, Andreas Herrig
  • Patent number: 9810033
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for performing subsea drilling operations. An example method may include receiving drilling fluid from a drilling fluid source at a first pressure by a pressure exchanger located within a subsea environment and receiving seawater from the subsea environment at a second pressure by the pressure exchanger to increase pressure of the drilling fluid within the pressure exchanger to a third pressure. The second and third pressures are substantially greater than the first pressure. The method may further include discharging the drilling fluid from the pressure exchanger into piping to communicate the drilling fluid to a drill forming a wellbore in a seabed and discharging the seawater from the pressure exchanger into the subsea environment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Inventors: Rod William Shampine, David Milton Eslinger
  • Patent number: 9716630
    Abstract: A customer's server datagram request and/or customer field unit's datagram is wrapped with a header and footer that contains a defined hopping path with direction control. An IP Host stores predefined hopping paths to all of the customer's field units, and looks at the address of the customer's request packet to determine the correct hopping path. A communication device receives the customer's field unit's datagrams and adds a defined hopping path to send the datagram to the IP Host which removes the hopping path and sends the datagram to the customer server.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 25, 2017
    Assignee: Silversmith, Inc.
    Inventor: David Silvers
  • Patent number: 9682752
    Abstract: An example deflection absorbing tensioner frame for a platform of an offshore vessel may include at least one metal beam supporting a tensioner. A deflection absorber may be coupled to at least one metal beam. The deflection absorber may be configured to absorb axial, rotational, and lateral deflections in a platform deck coupled to the deflection absorber.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2017
    Assignee: Dril-Quip, Inc.
    Inventors: Fife B. Ellis, Steven M. Hafernik, Neil B. Prasad
  • Patent number: 9482060
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a fluid conduit including a plurality of segments having a substantially flexible segment. The substantially flexible segment has substantially concentric inner and outer sidewalls and includes an adjustable pressure device configured to vary an internal annular pressure of the substantially flexible segment to counteract external pressure from a surrounding environment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2016
    Inventor: Susanne F Vaughan
  • Patent number: 9388635
    Abstract: In an apparatus of the type comprising a first assembly, a second assembly, an orientable rotatable connection between the first assembly and the second assembly, and a control device associated with the orientable rotatable connection, a method for controlling the actuation of the control device. Particular embodiments of the method include comparing an actual orientation of the second assembly with a target orientation, actuating the control device to perform a control device actuation cycle if the actual orientation is not acceptable, determining an updated actual orientation of the second assembly, comparing the updated actual orientation with the target orientation, and repeating the control device actuation cycle if the updated target orientation is not acceptable. A first exemplary embodiment of the method represents a target approach to achieving the target orientation. A second exemplary embodiment of the method represents an incremental approach to achieving the target orientation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Terence Allan Schroter, Alben D'Silva, Stephen Daniel Lloyd, Tim John Cox, Sheldon Kryger
  • Patent number: 9322727
    Abstract: Tension meter (82) for measuring a mechanical tension (F1) along a longitudinal direction (L) between a first element (84) and a second element (80) deployed in a well containing a fluid (50) having a fluid pressure, the tension meter comprising:—a bar (108) comprising a first portion (152), a second portion (154), and a measurement portion (156), and—a hollow member (110) defining a first chamber (169) surrounding the measurement portion, the bar being free to expand within the hollow member under the mechanical tension (F1) to be measured. The measurement portion includes at least one strain gauge (172). The tension meter includes first sealing elements for keeping the first chamber at a first chamber pressure, the measurement portion being subject to a compression force (F2) due to a difference between the fluid pressure and the first chamber pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2016
    Inventors: Christophe Michaud, Vincent Chatelet
  • Publication number: 20150144350
    Abstract: A riser assembly and method of providing a riser assembly for transporting production fluids from a location deep under water are disclosed. The riser assembly includes a riser comprising a flexible pipe, the riser having a hang off point which is an end of the riser that in use connects with a floating facility, and a touchdown zone which in use is a section of the riser in the region of where the riser meets the seabed or other fixed structure; and at least one buoyancy element arranged at the touchdown zone or within about 50 m of the touchdown zone of the riser to support the riser in a configuration for accommodating kinetic energy propagating along the riser from the hang off point.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 8, 2013
    Publication date: May 28, 2015
    Applicant: GE OIL & GAS UK LIMITED
    Inventors: Yucheng Hou, Zhimin Tan, Jiabei Yuan, Tricia Hill, Yanqiu Zhang
  • Publication number: 20150149114
    Abstract: Methods and systems are described for monitoring the integrity of a subsea pipeline network to transport the production fluid from a subsurface wellhead to surface facilities. More specifically, the described methods and systems are for monitoring the integrity of a riser pipe network and can include installing one or more inclinometers to the buoyancy tank and/or vertical riser structures.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 30, 2013
    Publication date: May 28, 2015
    Applicant: OneSubsea IP UK Limited
    Inventor: Vincent Alliot
  • Publication number: 20150144351
    Abstract: A riser or jumper assembly for transporting production, exportation or injection fluids is disclosed as is a method for providing buoyancy to such an assembly. The riser or jumper assembly includes a first segment of flexible pipe comprising a portion of flexible pipe body and a first and second end fitting, a further segment of flexible pipe comprising a portion of flexible pipe body and a first and second end fitting and an intermediate segment of flexible pipe comprising a portion of flexible pipe body and a first and second end fitting and at least one buoyancy element.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 3, 2014
    Publication date: May 28, 2015
    Applicant: Wellstream International Limited
    Inventors: Judimar de Assis Clevelario, Fabio de Souza Pires, Claudio Cezario de Barros, Rafael Goes
  • Patent number: 9038730
    Abstract: A marine riser includes one or more buoyancy modules running along a length of the marine riser, wherein the one or more buoyancy modules are molded such that an umbilical may be secured along a length of the one or more buoyancy modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2015
    Assignee: Deep Down, Inc.
    Inventor: Ron Smith
  • Patent number: 9038731
    Abstract: A tensioning apparatus for applying a substantially constant tension to a workover riser (12) includes a first portion (40) adapted to be coupled to a workover riser, a second portion (44) adapted to be coupled to a marine riser (14) and tensioning means (46) for providing relative movement between the first portion and the second portion to, in use, tension the workover riser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2015
    Assignee: Enovate Systems Limited
    Inventor: Jeffrey Edwards
  • Patent number: 9022123
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an apparatus for inspecting and monitoring flexible collection and production lines in real time, rendering possible constant tracking of the condition of the internal structures of a flexible riser, specifically of the tensile armor thereof. The device may be provided at any point along the riser ensuring the establishment of an area of physical and visual contact directly over the surface of the tensile armor of the riser for the installation of equipment for analysis, which area permits further accesses without destroying the sealing of the chamber there formed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2015
    Assignee: Petroleo Brasileiro S.A.-Petrobras
    Inventors: George Carneiro Campello, Sergio Ricardo Kokay Morikawa
  • Patent number: 9022122
    Abstract: A cap for protecting a sealing surface of a hub of a subsea device includes an equalization valve and a fluid conduit. The equalization valve includes a valve body having a pressure equalization conduit, a sleeve disposed about the valve body and having a port allowing fluid communication across the sleeve, and a valve spring configured to bias the sleeve to a closed position. The sleeve is configured to move to an open position in response to a force that depresses the sleeve and causes the valve spring to compress and the port is fluidly isolated from the pressure equalization conduit in the closed position and is in fluid communication with the pressure equalization conduit in the open position. In the open position, an interior environment of the subsea device is in fluid communication with the environment outside the cap through the equalization valve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 29, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2015
    Assignee: OneSubsea IP UK Limited
    Inventor: Nghia T. Tran
  • Patent number: 9022125
    Abstract: A marine riser includes a plurality of central pipes assembled end to end to form a main conduit. A plurality of tension members runs the length of the main conduit. The tension members are coupled to the main conduit to support and constrain an axial motion of the main conduit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2015
    Assignee: National Oilwell Varco, L.P.
    Inventors: James William Weir, Dean Allen Bennett
  • Publication number: 20150101819
    Abstract: A hybrid riser tower is disclosed with a rigid riser column and a buoyancy tank positioned to apply tension to the riser column by buoyant upthrust when the tower is in an upright orientation for use. At least one jumper support structure is attached to a side of the buoyancy tank between upper and lower ends of the buoyancy tank when the tower is oriented for use. At least one riser connection extends outside the buoyancy tank from a riser pipe of the riser column to the jumper support structure, where it connects to a flexible end fitting carried by the jumper support structure. The riser connection splays laterally moving from the riser pipe toward the jumper support structure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 15, 2013
    Publication date: April 16, 2015
    Inventor: Jean-Luc Bernard Legras
  • Publication number: 20150096760
    Abstract: A modular exploration and production system combined with an oil well testing and service vessel is provided, the vessel comprising equipment for separating hydrocarbons and/or associated fluids and solids by means of a processing plant. The vessel is equipped with suitable equipment packages for all required functionality, so fluid received from wells, piping and installations at sea or inland waters is processed for the separation, control and ecological handling of the mixture (crude oil, gas, solids, chemicals and oily or production water) in a plurality of phases such as exploration, drilling, finishing, repair, stimulation, production, and production measurement.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 3, 2013
    Publication date: April 9, 2015
    Applicant: Atlantis Offshore Holding Ltd.
    Inventors: Keith Millheim, Gabriel Delgado
  • Patent number: 8997873
    Abstract: The disclosure provides an in-situ system and method for transferring a load from a tensioned flexible link between at least two bodies, such as between a buoyancy can and a subsea riser or between a moored offshore platform and a pile. The system and method provides a tether assembly having a hydraulic cylinder and/or a transfer assembly, where the hydraulic cylinder is configured upon actuation to decrease a distance between the two bodies; and the transfer assembly includes a mechanical interlock configured upon actuation to maintain the decreased distance between the two bodies independent of the hydraulic cylinder. The mechanical interlock can include various embodiments that can be selectively activated and deactivated position to allow the hydraulic cylinder to operate at various times in the transfer process. A support assembly can provide additional support to the flexible link independent of or in addition to the transfer assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2015
    Assignee: Technip France
    Inventors: Brian Riordan, Mathieu Boisne, Tobias G. Selcer, Jacy Lee Robbins, Ange Luppi
  • Publication number: 20150090460
    Abstract: A system for bringing producing oil and gas from a subsea gathering manifold or wellhead, including a loop having an upper end at the surface and a lower end below the surface, the loop rotatable around a closed path, and production vessels attached to the cable loop, each production vessel having a hollow interior, the weight of the plurality of production vessels sufficient, when filled with seawater, to cause the production vessels to sink, the plurality of production vessels each having an inlet pipe. The system also includes a plurality of receivers attached to the production gathering manifold or wellhead that receive production fluid, the receivers engaging production vessels and filling them with well fluid while seawater is discharged from the production vessels, the production fluid having a lower density than ambient seawater so that the production vessels become buoyant when filled with the production fluid.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 25, 2014
    Publication date: April 2, 2015
    Inventor: Mari Hussain ALQAHTANI
  • Patent number: 8985217
    Abstract: A method, device, and system for determining whether liquid enters a subsea system includes a flow line having an inside bore capable of carrying producing fluids from a subsea wellhead to a floating production storage and offloading vessel (FPSO). An annulus is defined between an innermost sheath that surrounds the inside bore and an outermost sheath at an exterior of the flow line. The device further includes a housing element disposed within the annulus and in hydraulic communication with the annulus; a sensor element disposed at a predetermined location within the housing element; and data acquisition equipment capable of: determining environmental characteristics of the annulus based on measurements made by the sensor element, and determining at least one of the presence, location, and rate of collection of liquids in the subsea system based on the environmental characteristics of the annulus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2015
    Assignee: Schlumberger Technology Corporation
    Inventor: Dominic McCann
  • Patent number: 8985220
    Abstract: A well intervention system is described which has a riser access drive adapted to be located below a vessel, or a rig, work floor. The riser is tensioned and extends from a subsea wellhead to the access device which, in use, is attached to the riser at the location below the work floor. Embodiments of the invention are described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2015
    Assignee: Enovate Systems Limited
    Inventor: Jeffrey Charles Edwards
  • Publication number: 20150068759
    Abstract: The present Invention concerns a clamp (20) for mounting upon an elongate member such as a riser (24) to be deployed underwater. The clamp may for example be intended to prevent movement of a buoyancy module along a riser. The clamp comprises a plurality of clamp bodies (22) to be placed at circumferential intervals about the elongate member. A strap (42) is provided which is to be placed around the clamp bodies and tensioned to urge the clamp bodies toward the elongate member, enabling the clamp to resist movement along it. The clamp bodies comprise respective spring elements (28) which are arranged, when the clamp is assembled and mounted, between the clamp bodies and the elongate member. The clamp bodies and the spring elements are shaped to permit them to be used in clamps having a range of different diameters and having a differing number of clamp bodies.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 20, 2013
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Applicant: Trelleborg Offshore U. K. Ltd.
    Inventors: Austin Harbison, David Somerville
  • Publication number: 20150060079
    Abstract: A riser assembly and method of supporting a flexible pipe are disclosed. The assembly includes a riser; at least one buoyancy compensating element attached to the riser for providing positive, negative or neutral buoyancy to the riser; and a tethering element connecting a first point of the riser with a further point of the riser so as to form a hog bend or a sag bend in the riser.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 4, 2013
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Applicant: Wellstream International Limited
    Inventors: Richard Alasdair Clements, Yanqiu Zhang, Zhimin Tan, Yucheng Hou, Jiabei Yuan
  • Publication number: 20150053413
    Abstract: A method of providing buoyancy, the method comprising the steps of: (a) adding a buoyant fluid to a container, the buoyant fluid comprising a base fluid, an activator and from 25 to 60% vol/vol microspheres; and (b) increasing the viscosity of the buoyant fluid to at least 80,000 mPa·s at a shear rate of 0.8 s?1 at 293K. The structure may be a tubular-shaped container that is used subsea, such as a frame of a cable laying plough. Embodiments thus provide a convenient method of adding buoyancy to a structure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 20, 2014
    Publication date: February 26, 2015
    Inventor: Patrick Collins
  • Patent number: 8960302
    Abstract: A free-standing riser system connects a subsea source to a surface structure. The system includes a concentric free-standing riser comprising inner and outer risers defining an annulus there between. A lower end of the riser is fluidly coupled to the subsea source through a lower riser assembly (LRA) and one or more subsea flexible conduits. An upper end of the riser is connected to a buoyancy assembly and the surface structure through an upper riser assembly (URA) and one or more upper flexible conduits, the riser also mechanically connected to a buoyancy assembly that applies upward tension to the riser. The riser may be insulated for flow assurance, either by a flow assurance fluid in the annulus, insulation of the outside of the outer riser, or both. The system may include a hydrate inhibition system and/or a subsea dispersant system. The surface structure may be dynamically positioned.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignees: BP Corporation North America, Inc., BP Exploration Operating Company Limited
    Inventors: Roy Shilling, Paul W. Gulgowski, Jr., Philip D. Maule, Kevin Kennelley, Walter Greene, Robert W. Franklin, Vicki Corso, Tony Oldfield, Adam L. Ballard, Graeme Steele, David E. Wilkinson, Ricky Thethi, Chau Nguyen, Steve Hatton
  • Patent number: 8960304
    Abstract: An underwater fluid transport apparatus (10) to transport a fluid between a sea bed (12) and the surface (14) of the sea vertically above the sea bed. A riser (20) is connected to a flexible pipe (32) leading to the sea surface (14). A retaining float (24) is installed around the riser in order to maintain the riser (20) in a stretched suspended position between the sea bed (12) and a subsurface region situated between the sea bed and the surface (14) of the sea. The flexible pipe (32) extends in a catenary curve between the riser (20) and the sea surface. An additional float (28) is installed between the riser (20) and the sea surface (14). The riser (20) is attached to the additional float (28) to increase the buoyancy of the riser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Technip France
    Inventor: Ange Luppi
  • Patent number: 8960301
    Abstract: An underwater well is completed by extending an elongate stinger laterally outward from a vessel positioned at the water surface. The stinger is extended to curve downward toward a wellhead of the well. A well completion string is deployed from the vessel on the stinger while supporting the completing string to curve outward and downward from the vessel toward the wellhead. The completion string is then guided into the wellhead.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Travis Thomas Hailey, Jr., Thurman Philip Harrell
  • Publication number: 20150047852
    Abstract: A bottom-to-surface connection installation having a floating support and a turret and having: a plurality of risers having their top ends secured to a carrier structure a plurality of flexible pipes extending from the turret to the top ends of the risers; the flexible pipes including at least two first flexible pipes with positive buoyancy positioned at different heights; and guide modules secured to a tension leg and suitable for sliding along floats of the risers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 19, 2013
    Publication date: February 19, 2015
    Inventor: Francois Regis Pionetti
  • Patent number: 8955595
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for providing a controllable supply of fluid, and optionally power and/or communication signals, to a subsea equipment are provided. The fluid may be a water-based fluid, oil-based fluid, or chemicals. The apparatus includes a reservoir disposed on a seabed for storing a supply of fluid for delivery to the subsea well equipment. A subsea pumping device is configured to receive the fluid from the reservoir, pressurize the fluid, and deliver the pressurized fluid to an accumulator of a hydraulic power unit disposed on the seabed. The hydraulic power unit can store the pressurized fluid and control an output of the pressurized fluid to the subsea well equipment, thereby providing a subsea fluid source for the subsea equipment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
    Inventors: Chukwuemeka U. Emecheta, Thomas E. O'Donnell, Omid Oujani, Hailing An, Baha T. Tanju, George Siappas
  • Patent number: 8950474
    Abstract: A cap having a stinger adapted to be inserted into a bore of a subsea well element. The stinger includes locking means for locking to a profile in said bore, which locking means include a plurality of locking dogs. The locking dogs exhibit a large inclination face and a small inclination face, and are adapted to be actuated in a radial direction by an actuation sleeve. The small inclination face is divided by a slot, in which slot the large inclination face is arranged. A cam is arranged on the actuation sleeve and is adapted to extend into said slot. Alternatively, the small inclination face is divided by a cam arranged on the locking dog, on which the large inclination face is arranged, which cam is adapted to extend into a slot in the actuation sleeve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: Aker Subsea AS
    Inventor: Jarmo Kekarainen
  • Patent number: 8950499
    Abstract: An apparatus is disclosed which provides fluid communication between the inner bore and the annular space in a pipe-in-pipe system. Other embodiments disclose an apparatus which provides fluid communication between adjacent segments of the annular space, between the inner bore or the annular space and an external source in a pipe-in-pipe type system. Methods and systems are disclosed utilizing the various apparatus embodiments to transport well fluids in an offshore or onshore hydrocarbon production operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
    Inventors: Antonio C. F. Critsinelis, Sid A. Mebarkia, Michael Quinney, Miguel Ruiz
  • Publication number: 20140374117
    Abstract: Improved systems and methods for installing, maintaining and controlling a self-standing riser (SSR). SSRs are installed using wire pulleys or weights to place the SSRs over a wellhead. A flow diverter, which may be incorporated into or separate from a buoyancy chamber, allowing diversion of flow both into and out of an SSR. Non-annular buoyancy chambers configured to receive a riser of an SSR through a slot of the buoyancy chamber.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Publication date: December 25, 2014
    Inventors: Geir Aune, Keith K. Millheim
  • Patent number: 8905156
    Abstract: A template for use in positioning subsea wellbores that has a drop away funnel that extends laterally from the template. The drop away funnel is used to locate a piling adjacent the wellbores and is selectively detached from the template after installing the piling. A tang and clevis type assembly mounts the drop away funnel to the template, where the tang and clevis are coupled together with a main stud. The main stud is oriented substantially parallel with an axis of the drop away funnel; so that when the stud is removed, the drop away funnel can decouple from the template and slide axially downward along the piling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Assignee: Vetco Gray Inc.
    Inventors: Sibu Varghese, Clint Trimble, Christopher Loftin, Jeffrey Allen Raynal
  • Patent number: 8905142
    Abstract: Disclosed herein is a guide frame (10) for location at one or more points along the length of a riser tower structure (112,114). The riser tower structure is of a type that has an upper end supported at a depth below the sea surface and has a central core (200) with one or more conduits (220) arranged therearound extending from the seabed toward the surface. In use, the guide frame guides the conduit (s) relative to the central core, said guide frame (10) being attachable to said riser tower structure non-continuously (40,50), thereby not becoming an integral part of said riser tower structure. Also disclosed is a riser tower comprising such guide frames.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Assignee: Acergy France SA
    Inventor: Jean-Luc Bernard Legras
  • Patent number: 8899333
    Abstract: The invention discloses a subsea device comprising a can, a string of risers, a blowout preventer and a string of tie-back pipes. The blowout preventer is installed on the can. The top of risers is connected to a rig and its bottom is mounted on the blowout preventer. The upper of tie-back pipes is fixed to the can. The lower of tie-back pipes is mounted to a wellhead in the seabed by a subsea wellhead apparatus and connected to the casings for collecting oil/gas stored in formations by the subsea wellhead apparatus. A passage communicating the blowout preventer with tie-back pipe is jointed on the can. A pipeline, transporting oil/gas, mud and cuttings in drilling process, is divided into two sections, both tie-back pipes and casings, by the wellhead apparatus settled on seabed, thereby ensuring security of the rig in the drilling process and stronger operability of entire production system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 2, 2014
    Assignees: China National Offshore Oil Corporation, China Oilfield Services Limited
    Inventors: Yongfeng Guo, Shaojun Ji, Changquan Tang