BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc.'s Northstar project is well under way on the North Slope, but the company and its contractors and local and state dignitaries took advantage of the sailing of the first Northstar sealift barge from Anchorage July 19 to stage a celebration of the project and the new industry, sealift modules, which it helped spawn in Alaska.
BP Exploration (Alaska) President Richard Campbell noted that five years ago the work would have been done on the West Coast or in Louisiana, and said BP spent $2 million to upgrade the North Star Terminal dock and yard for Northstar module construction. When Northstar was delayed, the facilities were first used for the miscible injection expansion project, MIX, a module for which was barged out of Anchorage last year for installation at Prudhoe Bay.
The 2000 sealift, one barge, included the three-story, 700-ton permanent living quarters and utility module, a 115-ton tank skid and nine pipe racks.
The module was assembled by VECO Construction at North Star Terminal and Stevedoring near the Port of Anchorage. VECO Engineering did infrastructure design, Arctic Structures Inc. built the permanent living quarters and Rockford Inc. built tankage.
The pipe racks, 140 tons each, were built by Natchiq Inc. subsidiary Alaska Petroleum Contractors at its fabrication facility in South Anchorage.
The 2001 sealift will include the largest modules ever built in the state and require two barges for the two process modules, compressor module, pump skid and warehouse and shop building. The process modules weigh in at 3,500 tons and 3,700 tons and the compressor module at 3,500 tons.
The 2,500-ton MIX compressor module, which went north in a July 1999 sealift, was the largest module built so far in the state.
The first sealift modules ever built in Alaska, for ARCO Alaska Inc. and Anadarko Petroleum Corp.'s Alpine project, were built in Nikiski and were loaded onto two barges in early July 1999, a total of 4,500 tons.