Aker Solutions Delivers for Spectra Amid Challenges

Aker Process Systems Canada delivers the goods for Spectra Energy despite challenging conditions.

The Fort Nelson North Processing Facility project is the latest chapter not only in the ascension of Spectra Energy, but also in the long-standing relationship between the infrastructure provider and Aker Process Systems Canada (APSC). As part of Aker Solutions, a leading global oil services company providing engineering services, technologies, product solutions and field-life cycle solutions for the oil and gas industry, Aker Process Systems Canada provides fully engineered and modularized process technology solutions to companies like Spectra Energy throughout Canada and around the world.

Aker Process Systems Canada and Spectra Energy have a working relationship that began 15 years ago. Steve Olds, vice president of projects and operations for APSC’s Calgary office, says APSC’s history of providing modular processing facilities for Spectra Energy on a fast track basis played a significant role in helping it win the Fort Nelson contract.

“We have a local history of supplying fast track, modularized processing plants that we have been doing for a long time, and the modularized processing plants lead to reduced field construction costs when compared to, for example, a stick-built facility,” Olds says.

APSC’s involvement with the project began in 2009, when it undertook the conceptual and front end design work for the gas treatment section of the facility. “We developed the concepts for the facility and then took that straight through to complete detailed designs for the supply and fabrication of the modularized gas treatment section,” Olds says, adding that 19 process modules, over 2000 large bore pipe spools, and more than 40 structural modules were incorporated to make up the gas processing portion of the facility.

Even though APSC has extensive experience in dealing with this type of project, there were still challenges to overcome. “I think the most challenging aspect of this project really had to do with meeting the requirements of our client in terms of hitting the winter shipping window for the heavy haul modules,” Olds says.

Because Spectra Energy needed the facility up and running as soon as possible to give its customers the additional capacity they were going to need, APSC had to deliver the heavy haul modules during the treacherous winter months of the first quarter of 2011. Olds says the company was able to supply all the heavy haul modules within the winter shipping window allocated with the balance delivered by May 2011.

Overall, Olds says the Fort Nelson Processing Facility project is another example of the strong bond between Aker Process Systems Canada and Spectra Energy, and he expects this most recent success to lead to more collaboration in the future. As of mid-July 2011, APSC is actively supporting site construction and anticipates being involved in the facility’s commissioning and startup processes.

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