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About: The Montara gas and oil field is located 650 kilometres west of Darwin, in the Northern Territory. The Montara field, that is in Australian waters, in the Timor Sea, is owned and operated by PTTEP Australasia (PTTEP AA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Thai petroleum, exploration and production company, PTTEP. One of the top ten companies listed on the Thai Stock exchange.

The Montara Oil Field has a Life of 12 Years

The Montara oil and gas field that lies in 80 metres of sea water, has a 25 metre gas column and a ten metre oil column. The field consisting of four productive oil wells and a gas re-injection well, has an expected operational life of 12 years.

PTTEP Acquired Montara oil Field From Coogee Resources in 2008

The Montara oil field was initially discovered in 1988 by BHP Billiton. The field was taken over for development and operation by Australian company, Coogee Resources, in 2003. PTTEP AA acquired Coogee Resources late in 2008 and in doing so inherited the Montara oil and gas field that has recoverable reserves of 24 million barrels which are able to produce 35,000 barrels of low sulphur, light crude oil a day. The acquisition of Coogee Resources, by Thai owned PTTEP, also gave the company control over the Swallow, Swift and Skua oil fields, as well as the Montara field. The Montara development project consisted of a total of ten wells, one being a gas injection well and the other nine oil producing wells.

Unfortunate Incidences Delay Montara Field Production

It was initially planned to have the Montara oil field operational by 2008 but this had to be put back because of the PTTEP takeover, and, again in 2009, when the Montara development project sufferred an oil and gas spill from a drilling well. It finally became operational in 2010. While the leak at the West Atlas oil rig was being attended to a fire broke out at the Montara well head platform. The leak was successfully plugged on November 3, 2009.

Freeway FPSO Renamed Montara Ventura

The Montara development project consisted of a FPSO (floating, production, storage and offloading) vessel, the Freeway oil tanker, with tiebacks connected to the Swallow, Swift and Skua fields. The Freeway was converted from being an oil tanker to become a FPSO by Tanker Pacific in the Jurong Shipyard in Singapore. The Freeway FPSO, which was renamed, “Montara Ventura,” has been designed to give continuous service on site for the next 20 years without having to be dry docked. It is moored in 80 metres of water and consists of a four-level 750 tonne wellhead platform.

Montara Project Benefits from Top Contractors

Norway's Advanced Production and Loading supplied the unique, flexible STP (submerged turret production). The Montara platform was designed by Worley Parsons, an Australian oil and gas industry professional services provider. The design of the platform proved to be difficult because of the weak soils at the project site. It was also necessary for the platform to be able to survive the occasional cyclonic storm. Other infrastructure entailed the provision of a crude oil separation facility as well as gas compression and reinjection facilities.

Australian construction and engineering company, Clough, installed the Montara platform with the help of the pipelay barge, Java Constructor. Technip carried out the concept engineering of the platform. The Clough contract ceased in November, 2009, when the well head began leaking.

VetcoGray, a subsidiary of GE Oil and Gas, was contracted to supply the Montara project's subsea controls and production tees. Its contract also included the installation of control systems and wellheads. Engineering work on the Montara Ventura FPSO was carried out by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries with NKT flexibles providing the riser system. Offshore installation of the pipeline, subsea systems, wellhead platform and FPSO was provided by Independent Offshore Solutions.


PTTEP Australasia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of PTTEP, a Thai national petroleum exploration and production company. PTTEP operates more than 40 projects globally with a workforce of 4,000, international assets include exploration and production projects in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, more


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