Success in a harsh environment

A Steel & Tube product has been selected for one of the most challenging environments in the country – the Maui B oil and natural gas platform.

Located 35 kilometres off the Taranaki coast on the Maui gas field, the platform is a harsh marine and industrial environment, and the platform’s equipment must be able to withstand extreme conditions.

Steel & Tube provided Maui B with a product called FRAMO, an extremely sturdy structural steel section, which was used to install cable trays as part of a project to redirect a large number of electrical conduits to other areas of the rig.

As well as robust performance requirements, the method used to install the product was equally important. As an oil and gas platform, Maui B has a combustible hydrocarbon environment, forcing engineers to seek an alternative to traditional welding techniques.

FRAMO is unusual because it’s a very strong box section manufactured in a kitset form so it can be screwed together and installed without any on-site welding. Removing the need to weld made the project much simpler – there was no need for a hot-work permit or a welder trained to work in dangerous conditions and that meant a greatly reduced risk to the platform. Steel & Tube simply helicoptered the pre-assembled product to the platform from New Plymouth for installation.

The Maui B job follows the successful installation of a similar product on the Maui A platform.