Independent Seal of Approval for Sigma Offshore’s Smart Mooring System (UK)


Aberdeen-based moorings provider Sigma Offshore has received independent endorsement for the centrepiece of its market offering – its innovative Smart Mooring System (SMS).

The system has been endorsed by one of the leading classification societies, Det Norsk Veritas (DNV), after a comprehensive assessment process.

DNV used its procedure for the qualification of new technology to examine a system with 6 or more mooring legs and has awarded Sigma Statements of Feasibility and of Endorsement for the system that is attracting global interest from major operators, contractors, independent producers and investors.

The assessment examined SMS and concluded that, although the overall concept itself is new, each of the components is proven technology, and consequently the risks of using the new design can be safely managed during a design and manufacturing project. The Statement of Endorsement covers mooring systems using all chain, chain and wire and chain and polyester rope mooring legs to cover a wide range of water depths.

The FPSO or FSO bow mooring and riser in-boarding system for single or multiple risers had already received DNV Approval in Principle during its development phase.

Chief Technology Officer David Galbraith says: “These awards underpin our confidence that we have introduced to the market a solution that takes this area of offshore support operations into a new era.

“This certification represents an independent seal of approval for SMS – and is an important step forward for Sigma Offshore as we look to grow significantly during 2011 and beyond.”

Sigma Offshore believes the system, which uses existing technology in a more efficient way for many applications, can save clients up to 30% on total installed cost. A bespoke SMS can cost from £10m (US$15.9m) to £30m (US$47.7m) or more depending on the complexity and size of the project.

The bow-mounted turret of SMS allows unlimited weathervaning. SMS can be installed during a conversion of a tanker to an FPSO or FSO without the need to dry-dock the ship and without interfering with any work being undertaken on process equipment.

Originally developed for FPSOs, the SMS is suitable for a variety of marine applications including floating storage, extended well test (EWT) applications, LNG floating storage and regasification units (FSRU) and compressed natural gas (CNG).

Sigma Offshore also delivers floating production export system solutions, subsea architecture design, deepwater subsea solutions, consultancy services and project management.

Last year Sigma received £4m ($6.3m) of investment from global oil and gas services company National Oilwell Varco (NOV), Scottish Enterprise’s Scottish Venture Fund (SVF) and venture capital firm, Energy Ventures.

Source: Sigma Offshore, February 4, 2011;

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