SBM Offshore wins OTC ‘Spotlight on New Technology’ award for FPSO Turritella’s innovative TMS



SBM Offshore was one of the 17 winners of a prestigious Spotlight on New Technology award at the 2017 Offshore Technology Conference OTC. This is the 6th such award that SBM Offshore has received in seven years.

The pioneering Turret Mooring System (TMS) for the FPSO Turritella represents a step change for the industry and cements SBM Offshore’s reputation as the leader in turret mooring systems, leveraging over 60 years of experience. Pushing the boundaries of mooring technologies, the TMS has resulted in two new world records for FPSO Turritella as:

– The world’s deepest floating oil and gas production system at 9,500ft (2,900m).

– The first use of steel lazy wave risers on a disconnectable Turret Mooring System.


To achieve these industry firsts, the project required four enabling technologies to be developed, qualified and incorporated into the TMS design, associated with the disconnectable buoy, the reconnection system and the mooring line tensioning system.

a. Firstly, as a consequence of the ultra-deep water and high pressure steel risers, the disconnectable buoy was much larger than used on any previous Turret Mooring System.  The developed solution used syntactic foam blocks rather than traditional steel plate for the buoy construction.

b. Secondly, to mate the massive buoy with the turret during reconnection, a novel heave compensation system was developed for pull-in operations.

c. Thirdly, to connect the buoy to the turret a series of high capacity structural connectors were required, with capacities well above anything available in the industry.

d. Finally, in order to adjust the tension in the mooring legs, an in-line tensioning device was developed and qualified to allow the tension to be adjusted from a work boat. This avoided the need to tension the mooring legs from the buoy and provides a novel means to compensate for any stretch in the polyester mooring legs during the life of the system, allowing future systems to be installed in even deeper water if required.