Third annual OTC dinner recognizes Total, Ken Arnold and Offshore Energy Center
BY PRAMOD KULKARNI, Editor
HOUSTON – OTC kickstarted its 2013 conference on Sunday night with its third annual dinner with awards presentations recognizing distinguished achievements. The dinner took place literally below the sea level at the Reliant stadium, where the Houston Texans football team plays its games. ROVs from Oceaneering and equipment from FMC Technologies added to the subsea atmosphere.
More than 100,000 visitors from around the world are expected for the four-day conference featuring the “biggest ever” technical exhibits.
Total received the award for companies for its deepwater Pazlor project offshore Angola and Ken Arnold for his development of recommended practices for offshore equipment sizing and facility project management.
“We’re here to celebrate the technology achievements of the offshore energy industry that is helping provide energy for more than seven billion people around the world,” proclaimed Steve Balint, Chairman, OTC Board of Directors.
Houston Mayor Annise Parker, who got her start in the oil and gas industry, welcomed the delegates to the energy capital of world. “We understand what the offshore energy industry means for the economy of the city as well as the entire globe.”
The year 2013 is also the 40th anniversary of Norway’s participation at the OTC. To celebrate, OTC invited Norway’s Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit. As he paid tribute to the offshore energy industry, Prince Haakon said, “Norwegians discovered America and U.S. companies discovered oil offshore Norway.”
A highlight of the OTC dinner included entertainment by Mass Ensemble, which had constructed a giant “earth harp” by extending harp strings across the hall.
This year’s beneficiary of the proceeds from the annual dinner is the Offshore Energy Center, which is dedicated to expanding the awareness of the offshore energy industry through its Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig Museum and Education Center, the Offshore Pioneers Hall of Fame, and its educational program for students, teachers, and the general public. Galen Cobb, Vice Chairman of Education Outreach, accepted the award on behalf of the Offshore Energy center. Cobb is also the vice president of industry affairs for Halliburton.
Ken Arnold received the OTC award for individuals for his outstanding leadership and extensive contributions to the E&P industry. His achievements include the development of recommended practices for offshore design and safety management, and developing approaches to both equipment sizing and facility project management that are still in use today. He also has been instrumental in the effort to establish oilfield facilities engineering as a recognized technical engineering specialty.
Total was honored for its Pazflor deepwater development offshore Angola. Yves-Louis Darricarrère, President Upstream, accepted the award on behalf of Total. Now 18 months into production, Pazflor is one of the world’s largest and most sophisticated deep offshore developments to date. In addition to the first use of subsea separation and pumping on a wide scale, the project included the construction of the world’s largest FPSO, and one of the most complex subsea networks. Pazflor made a significant contribution to industrial development in Angola with 3.5 million man-hours of work undertaken locally. The field started up one month ahead of schedule in August 2011.
Heritage awards were presented to James Brill and Dendy Sloan for their leadership and pioneering spirit. Brill, Professor Emeritus at the University of Tulsa, is a trailblazer in the discipline of multiphase flow in pipes and wells. His research in this area led to the formation of the Tulsa University Fluid Flow Projects. He also founded the Tulsa University Paraffin Deposition Projects.
Dendy Sloan has been an industry leader, professor and researcher in the area of hydrates for four decades. The modeling and simulation tools resulting from his research are used daily for the design and operation of offshore production systems. In 1993, he founded the International Conference on Gas Hydrates. Two decades later, the conference has grown to more than 1,000 participants.
At the conclusion of the dinner, attendees received a new book, Offshore: The Early Years, published by Offshore Energy Center.