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    Petrobras Launches Pre-Salt Field off Brazil


The floating production storage and offloading unit for the field arrived in February.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Petrobras Launches Pre-Salt Field off Brazil

Brazilian oil giant Petrobras announced on June 25 the start of oil and gas production at the offshore Atapu pre-salt field in the Santos basin.

The P-70 floating production storage and offloading (FPSOs) unit being used to exploit the field and other nearby deposits can handle up to 150,000 b/d of oil and 2.2bn m3/yr of gas. The unit has been positioned about 200 km off the coast of the Rio de Janeiro state in waters 2,300 metres deep. It will be connected up to eight producing wells and eight injector wells.

Petrobras has a 89.26% stake in Atapu, while Shell has 4.26%, France's Total 3.83%, Portugal's Petrogal 1.7% and Brazil's state-owned PPSA 0.95%. The field forms part of the Iara cluster in block BM-S-11A, where Petrobras' international partners have larger interests. While Petrobras has a 42.5% stake in the block, Shell has 25%, Total 22.5% and Petrogal 10%.

"The ramp-up of Iara's production reflects Total's growth strategy in the Brazilian deep offshore, where the group focuses on giant projects that produce barrels of oil at competitive cost, resilient in the face of oil price volatility," Total's upstream president Arnaud Breuillac said.

The P-70 was built in a shipyard in Qingdao, China. It left the yard in December last year and arrived in Rio de Janeiro in February. It is the fifth in a series of replica FPSOs that Brazil is using to exploit offshore pre-salt reserves.