Shell has floated the largest sea vessel in the world to “unlock new energy resources offshore”.
The 488-metre long hull of the Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility was taken out of dry dock at the Samsung Heavy Industries yard in Geoje, South Korea.
Still under construction, once completed it will be largest floating facility ever built, producing around 3.6 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) each year.
The Prelude FLNG will be used to produce natural gas at sea, turn it into LNG and then transfer it to ships for transportation to customers.
Designed to withstand a category five cyclone, the vessel will operate in a remote basin around 475km north east of Broome in Western Australia for approximately 25 years.
Matthias Bichsel, projects and technology director at Shell, said: “Making FLNG a reality is no simple feat. A project of this complexity – both in size and ingenuity – harnesses the best of engineering, design, manufacturing and supply chain expertise from around the world.
“Getting to this stage of construction, given that we only cut the first steel a year ago, is down to the expert team we have ensuring that the project’s critical dimensions of safety, quality, cost and schedule are delivered.”