Turkey has started work on laying the deep-sea section of a pipeline to carry its over 540 billion cubic meters (bcm) natural gas reserves from the Black Sea.
Pipeplaying vessel Castorone began work on the section Sunday after the shallow-water section of the pipeline was completed earlier.
Work at Turkey’s newly discovered Sakarya Gas Field in the Black Sea continues 24/7 as the project is expected to unlock Turkey’s foreign dependency in the energy sector, according to Energy Minister Fatih Dönmez.
Since its launch, the project has passed important milestones on a daily basis as onshore and offshore works continue at a breakneck pace.
More than 5,000 personnel are working round-the-clock at the Sakarya Field, the site of Turkey’s largest natural gas discovery, to start pumping to the national grid by Q1 2023.
Multiple teams from the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) are carrying out onshore and offshore works to connect the Sakarya Gas Field to the Natural Gas Processing Facility at Filyos, a town in northern Turkey’s Zonguldak.
To that end, the 325-meter, 56,529-ton Castorone anchored off Filyos on July 6 and took over work on the deep-sea section after pipelaying in shallow waters was completed by the vessel, Castoro 10.
Large sections of the offshore pipeline, each measuring 12 meters in length, were loaded onto support vessels at Filyos Port before being transfered to Castorone, which remained approximately 500 meters offshore.
The giant vessel is scheduled to complete the pipelaying works by the beginning of autumn.
The pipelaying work was launched by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on June 13 when the first section of the pipeline was lowered into the shallow waters of the Black Sea.
Energy Minister Dönmez had said the Sakarya Gas Field will go down in history as the world’s fastest offshore field development project, from exploration to the first production.
Initially, six to 10 wells will be connected to Sakarya Gas Field’s offshore production facility, which will pump around 10 million cubic meters per day to Turkey’s natural gas network in 2023. The amount corresponds to 3.5-4 bcm per annum.
Production, however, will be gradually increased, reaching the highest of 40 million cubic meters per day by 2027-28.