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Houston, USA – 1 September 2004 – JDR Cables Systems LTD.

JDR Cable Systems, Oil & Gas group, based in the UK and US, was the manufacturer chosen by several key package suppliers to this project to provide four distinctly different, but nevertheless critical, umbilical and cable systems for the Kizomba A deepwater production system. JDR is one of the world’s foremost designers and manufacturers of static and dynamic custom cable and umbilical systems for the oil and gas industry. The company’s extensive track record spans more than 17 years, having supplied over 700 umbilicals to 173 projects with over 42 operators around the world.

Catenary Power Cable Designed for 25-Year Life

Designed for a 25-year offshore service life, the Kizomba A catenary power/instrumentation cable, manufactured by JDR, underwent rigorous testing for quality and reliability both during manufacturing and after installation.

The 1,640-ft. (500-m) dynamic armored cable connects Kizomba A’s TLP and FPSO, providing both electrical power through 15 kV rated power cores and signal transmission, utilizing 72 fiber optic elements. The cable is protected by bend stiffeners and associated hang-off terminations, also designed and manufactured by JDR.

“The cable received full in-house and third-party dynamic analysis, and ExxonMobil required SN curves (showing material fatigue characteristics) for each material in the cable,” said Patrick Kearney, JDR Director for Quality and Reliability. “Individual fatigue tests were carried out on the copper cores at a temperature of 65° C to satisfy that requirement.” He added that once completed, the cable was subjected to a pull test, in which angular rotation also was measured under load. What’s more, it will be subjected to an overall fatigue flex cycle test to demonstrate its suitability for 25 years of service life. JDR’s Offshore Support Team then supervised the installation and hook-up of the cable offshore.

In addition to the Kizomba A catenary cable, JDR has supplied similar offshore power/instrumentation cables for other projects in West Africa, the Far East and the Gulf of Mexico with cable voltages up to 33 kV for high power requirements in high temperature, dynamic applications.

Kizomba IWOCS umbilical — Leading Edge Technology

JDR designed and supplied a 4,920 ft. (1,500m) IWOCS umbilical system for Kizomba A reflecting the company’s leadership in supplying such systems. This IWOCS umbilical consists of five 2.5 mm 2 screened twisted pair cables; five 1/4-in., 10,000-psi hoses; eight 3/8-in., 5,000-psi hoses, and five 1/2-in., 5,000-psi, collapse resistant hoses for methanol injection.

The JDR design centers around specially reinforced cables that are placed at the umbilical’s center inside the hose components. This allows for an umbilical with as small an outside diameter as possible. This, in turn, reduces the size of the required reeler, preserving precious offshore load space. An aramid fiber braid encapsulated inside the umbilical inner and outer sheaths provides mechanical strength. The Aramid braid is terminated to the stab plate with a termination assembly, incorporating a moulded bend stiffener. This offers safe transition of any bending loads from the steel armor body to the flexible umbilical.

Work on the Kizomba A IWOCS umbilical began at JDR’s UK manufacturing facility in February 2002. Fully accredited to ISO 9001, JDR manufactures products in accordance with ISO 13628-5/API 17E specifications.

JDR integrated the completed IWOCS umbilical to the reeler the following September, at which time it was shipped to the platform off Angola in time to meet the drilling schedule.

Flying leads counted by dozens

Designing, manufacturing and testing the numerous hydraulic flying leads (HFLs) required for Kizomba A validated the company’s highly rated engineering and project management experience. Producing 61 HFLs from seven different designs, all varying in length from 23 ft (7m) to 492 ft. (150m), required a high degree of co-ordination among those groups. This was particularly highlighted by the company’s ability to synchronize the availability of third party stab plates with the ongoing production of umbilicals.

Due to the number of HFLs which were to be handled on site, JDR was asked to provide an alternative to conventional reels for transport, according to Neil Brown, JDR Project Manager. “After a thorough design review, a new system was developed such that 90% of the HFLs were dispatched in fit for purpose “user-friendly crates” that were significantly strengthened without adding bulk which made them easier to store and reusable“ said Neil Brown.

The Kizomba HFLs were strengthened with encapsulated aramid fiber braids, which help reduce the risk of possible handling damage during both factory and on-site installation testing (FIT/SIT) and during the actual deepwater installation by Remote Operated Vehicles (ROV’s). The provision of fully engineered thermoplastic sheathed and aramid fibre reinforced umbilicals for short flying leads was driven by review of the installation, use and life expectancy for these products and their production critical application.

“The overall system approach was critical even to the degree where the interface between the umbilical and the stab plate had to be carefully conceived to minimize the size and weight of each HFL while still allowing successful integration,” said Neil. “That fully protected the hose components, improving reliability and thereby significantly reducing the possibility of installation downtime.”

Production of the Kizomba HFLs began in October 2002. The last one was completed in February 2004. In the process, said Neil, the company benefited from significant “lessons learned” and currently is completing an average of six such HFLs per week for both the Kizomba B and Erha deepwater projects.

Topside umbilicals equally crucial

Though they are shorter in length than those supplied for the subsea portion of the project, the company devoted the same attention to quality and reliability in producing the topside wellhead control umbilicals. Without reliable topside wellhead control, Kizomba wells couldn’t produce at peak efficiency.

JDR supplied 36 electro-hydraulic wellhead control umbilicals, each 40 ft. (12.2 m) long, as well as 72 hydraulic junction boxes with methanol recovery and a total of 144 electrical junction boxes. JDR also supplied 72 sets of umbilical terminations, including mechanical hang-offs, pull-in heads and split flanges.

“The umbilical systems were supplied through separate contracts spanning a two-year period, 2002-2004,” said Matthew Whitworth, VP Sales and Marketing, USA.

“Kizomba A is one of 12 projects to which JDR has supplied such topside control umbilical equipment during the past five years”, said Matthew, the first being ExxonMobil’s Hoover/Diana project in the Gulf of Mexico. Currently in production are the topside umbilicals for Kizomba B. JDR has provided systems for the majority of major projects such as Horn Mountain, Gunnison, Medusa, Devil’s Tower, Front Runner and Marco Polo, in the Gulf of Mexico and many others around the world developed by independents, major multi-national and national operating companies.

“We very much serve a niche in the market,” said Pat Herbert, Group Chief Executive Officer. “Our niche is the middle-size umbilical, and we have the expertise, manufacturing experience and capability that smaller companies can’t approach.”

JDR’s position in the umbilical market means that customers get the level of attention during the design and manufacturing process that smaller companies cannot provide and the service and attention that larger ones often miss. Clients gain from the benefits of JDR’s extensive project management and design capability on small projects as well as larger ones.