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Hima-Sella to build ESD system for North Sea offshore rig

Oilfield Technology,

Specialist safety instrumentation systems provider Hima-Sella has been awarded a contract to develop an emergency shutdown (ESD) system for a North Sea oil platform; in relation to modifications being made in order for the platform to receive and process product from two subsea wells.


The platform’s new ESD will be implemented using a HIMA HIMax, a programmable electronic system (PES) designed for use in production processes that can ill afford downtime. HIMax is extremely scalable as it has virtually unlimited expansion potential; and for this particular project the PES will initially have more than 300 I/O channels, which will interface with sensors and actuators.

Moreover, HIMax delivers SIL3 protection that is ‘NON-STOP’, in that hardware and software changes can be made without interrupting the functionality of the system. It also offers scalable redundancy (which HIMA brands as ‘XMR’) for operation in quad, triple, dual or single mode.

Flexible system

Eddy Turnock, Hima-Sella’s Sales & Marketing Director, comments: “HIMax is proving incredibly popular within the oil and gas sector. Operators and owners alike are appreciating how the system’s flexibility, scalability and NON-STOP performance make HIMax – along with Hima-Sella’s engineering capabilities - the ideal solution for managing functional safety throughout the entire lifecycle of their platforms.”

Turnock goes on to say that improved drilling techniques and better access to subsea wells are extending the life of many oil and gas platforms, which need to be modified to accept and process product: “And with functional safety applicable to the entire lifecycle of a platform, in accordance with IEC 61508, the ESD and other safety systems must keep pace with any and all modifications.”

Enabling the platform to accept and process oil from the two subsea wells

The contract for the development of the ESD was awarded to Hima-Sella - following an extensive and rigorous evaluation process that began in late 2013 – by the engineering company responsible for making the modifications to enable the platform to accept and process oil from the two subsea wells.

Hima-Sella is building the ESD at its headquarters in Stockport, United Kingdom, and the system functionality is being created using HIMA’s SILworX programming tool. In addition, the development and verification of the ESD’s functionality is being overseen by Hima-Sella’s dedicated Functional Safety Management Team, on which only engineers certified to TÜV FSEng or FSP can work.

Factory acceptance testing is scheduled before the end of 1Q15, after which the HIMax will be transported to the platform for installation and commissioning.


Adapted from press release by Cecilia Rehn

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