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Removal of the Ekofisk tank

Excavators fitted with claws and sorting equipment cut and sorted the superstructure of the Ekofisk tank offshore and transported it ashore for source separation and recycling.

Project status

      Nov 2004
      Aug 2007

      About the project

      When the superstructure of the Ekofisk tank was to be removed, AF chose to pick it clean with excavators out in the North Sea. The components were transported to the AF Environmental Base at Vats for source separation and recycling.

      • 98 %

        Steel recycled

      • 25 000

        Topside weight in tonnes

      AF Gruppen

      Vats, Norge

      Developed new removal method – "Piece Small”

      The Ekofisk tank was the start of the Norwegian oil adventure. When the tank’s superstructure was to be removed, it was also the start of a new and forward-looking industry: recycling of offshore installations. A social challenge in which AF saw the opportunity to use its expertise from the removal of industrial plants onshore in an offshore environment. Based on a study carried out in 2004, AF was commissioned to remove the superstructure on the Ekofisk tank. The project was carried out as a general contract at a fixed price. The work included engineering, planning, removal and disposal (EPRD). 

      AF developed a completely new method of removal, "Piece Small". Excavators fitted with claws and sorting equipment were moved offshore. The tank was then dismantled, cut up, sorted and loaded onto specially-built containers and transported ashore with supply vessels from Heerema. 

      The Ekofisk tank was then made ready for recycling at what is currently Europe’s most state-of-the-art recycling plant for decommissioned offshore installations, the AF Environmental Base at Vats. 

      A total of 98% of the steel from the Ekofisk tank was recycled and used, for example, in reinforcement iron in buildings.

      Project info

      Project type: Removal and disposal offshore
      Business unit: AF Offshore Decom
      Customer: ConocoPhillips
      Contract type: EPRD

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