FRAMO Engineering is marking 25 years as a market leader in enhanced recovery systems – a quarter of a century at the forefront of cutting-edge technology.
This great milestone was celebrated with an event at Trinity Hall in Aberdeen on September 26 which was attended by some of the leading figures in the subsea industry.
And the company is looking to the future with continued confidence after a buoyant 2008 which has seen significant contracts awarded and industry recognition at the 23rd Scottish Offshore Achievement Awards ceremony.
Tony Laing, general manager of Framo Engineering UK, said: “This is a tremendous milestone for a company that has been committed to innovation and technology, always believing in nothing less than pushing the boundaries to achieve the vision of being the leader in enhanced recovery solutions.”
2008 has been both a year of growth and a springboard for progress, with innovations including the development of the company’s new pumping system – the HiBoost multiphase, offering a delta pressure of 160bar – which takes pumping technology on to the next level.
The company has also underlined its UK commitment – signing a 10-year lease on new premises at St Swithin Row, Aberdeen, developing and supporting the existing and new infrastructure.
It is also in the process of developing new enhanced manufacturing and subsea test facilities in the Bergen area of Norway.
Framo Engineering employs more than 300 people with a turnover of 2,000million NOK and is generally recognised as the leader in enhanced recovery system solutions – a direct result of focus on delivering, on time, the right technology solution, and working with the clients and understanding their needs.
The UK market has provided great opportunities for the company, and this year, Framo UK received significant recognition at the Scottish Offshore Achievement Awards, where Oilexco won outright the Uptake of Technology Category using Framo’s enhanced recovery compact manifold integrated system, and Framo received a Highly Commended award in the Innovating Technology Category for the CNR Columba E Raw Seawater Injection System – a world first. Both of these projects have been successfully in operation since 2007.
Framo Engineering has a proven history of pioneering and developing fluid transfer systems, from subsea wellstream boosting and metering through to swivel systems onboard FPSOs, and places considerable emphasis on technology enhancement, testing and qualification programmes. This, along with its vast experience, has enabled the company to make the difference.
Today, the company has in excess of 850,000 pump-operating hours from 24-pump systems worldwide and more than 800 metres on its reference list for either multiphase/wet gas operations. Framo supplies complete process transfer systems for fluid and gas transport, together with innovative control and monitoring equipment.
“We pride ourselves on developing systems to meet the most demanding economical and technological offshore requirements,” said Mr Laing.
“Our system building block portfolio boasts pump systems (multiphase, water injection) and flow meters (wet gas/multiphase), high-speed controls, compact manifolds for topside and subsea application. Today, we are further qualifying the Framo wet gas pumping compressor system for which the technology was proven some years ago.
“This technology is an incremental progression in our proven and accredited pumping technologies that enable pumping of true wet gas composition without the economic burden and technology challenging subsea separation systems.
“Working alongside, and engaged with, our clients, our product strategy is based on the company’s sound track record in pioneering and developing robust technology, taking from our operational experience. This experience has contributed greatly to building upon a modular standard approach to make incremental changes and focus on the industry demands.”
Not only is Framo a market leader in enhanced recovery systems, it also has an unrivalled reputation backed by an impressive list of successful projects, providing a unique approach in supporting its clients for the whole field life, of which the Aberdeen office is part of the plan.
The UK sector has offered many opportunities for Framo over the years, and some of the subsea firsts have been championed in North Sea waters, including in recent years:
The world’s first multi-manifold using Framo’s unique multi-selector – Maersk (Kerr-McGee Gyphon) in 2005. The company has just engaged Framo to engineer, manufacture/test a second one for Bumbarton Phase II in 2008.
The world’s first raw seawater injection system – CNR Columba E. This has pioneered Framo’s unique approach farther afield, in Brazilian waters.
The Framo integrated manifold system – Oilexco Brenda 2005. The system optimised the Framo multi-manifold (Multimanifold), multiphase flow meter (Phasewatcher Vx), multiphase pump, associated high-performance controls and umbilical.
Mr Laing said: “Framo was formed on the vision to be the leader in enhanced recovery systems, and this vision has been the main propeller in driving the company forward to where it is today.
“Working with one vision in mind helped us build on a strategy and develop technologies that are bespoke to deliver a client’s solution. This is only achievable by means of our vast experience in enhanced recovery systems.
“We believe strongly in looking after the three main properties that ensure the company continues to be successful: the clients, our people and our technology.
“Looking ahead, I can safely say that this culture and mentality – the main foundations of this business – will never change.
“Framo has a worldwide presence. We have systems installed in the UK and as far afield as Australia, China, Brazil, West Africa and the Gulf of Mexico, and like the company, our presence can only grow from strength to strength.
“We will continue being the leader, and in order to retain our position, we will have to constantly perform beyond expectations.
“This basically means we have to engineer better, manufacture better and test better – we are the only company in the world that has its own subsea test dock where we can test beyond the norm, and we have had that for over 20 years.
“The only way forward from this point is to have a continuous commitment to meeting the vision set 25 years ago.”