PIONEERING SPIRIT SETS WORLD LIFTING RECORD
Allseas’ dynamically positioned single-lift installation/decommissioning and pipelay vessel “Pioneering Spirit” set a world lifting record with the safe and successful removal of Shell UK’s 24,000 t Brent Delta platform topsides from the North Sea on 28 April 2017. Located in the Brent field, approximately 186 km off the north-east coast of Shetland, the Brent Delta topsides sat on a three-legged gravity-based structure which stands in 140 m of water. The topsides has since been sea-fastened on board “Pioneering Spirit” for transport to the Able UK decommissioning yard in Teesside, North East England.
Owner Able UK has invested £28m in building Europe’s strongest quayside where the 44m high topside will be dumped to allow a 50-strong team cut it down for scrap.
After four years of planning the successfull operation 115 miles north east of Shetland by the Dutch vessel Pioneering Spirit is a game-changer for North Sea decommissioning.
Pioneering Spirit is the largest construction vessel ever built. Inspired by the offshore heavy lifting pioneer Pieter Schelte Heerema (1908–81) and designed completely in-house, the vessel is designed for the single-lift installation and removal of large oil and gas platforms and the installation of record-weight pipelines.
The emergence of Pioneering Spirit signifies a step-change in offshore installation and decommissioning. Built at the DSME shipyard in South Korea (2011–14), the vessel commenced offshore operations in the summer of 2016 and set a new offshore lifting record with her first commercial job, removal of Repsol’s 13,500 ton Yme production unit in the Norwegian North Sea, on 22 August 2016. (Source: AllSeas)