Asia Excellence

Chevron is expecting to resume production from its $54bn Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) project offshore Australia this month after recently being closed due to mechanical issues.

The news came after Chevron announced in March that the first shipment of LNG from the Gorgon project departed Barrow Island and was delivered to Chubu Electric Power in Japan.

The company is in the process of completing repairs at the plant and hopes to attain full production at Train 1 within a period of six to eight months.

Production was halted at the project last month due to a problem with the propane refrigerant circuit on the first production line known as Train 1.

The circuit is a closed system, and used to cool natural gas supplied to the plant.

"Repairs to this equipment are nearing completion, and we are in the process of reinstating the propane refrigerant circuit."

Chevron technology and projects executive vice-president Joseph Geagea told The Sydney Morning Herald that Train 2 and Train 3 are expected to start six and 12 months later.

Geagea said: "Repairs to this equipment are nearing completion, and we are in the process of reinstating the propane refrigerant circuit."

Howver, construction activities continued to progress on LNG Trains 2 and 3 with timing not affected by the work on Train 1, the company said.

Gorgon will have the capacity to produce 15.6 million tonnes of LNG per year once all three trains become operational.

The Gorgon project is a joint venture between Chevron (47.3%), ExxonMobil (25%), Shell (25%), Osaka Gas (1.25%), Tokyo Gas (1%) and Chubu Electric Power (0.417%). It receives gas from the Gorgon and Jansz-Io gas fields located within the Greater Gorgon area, between 130km and 220km off the north-west coast of Western Australia.


Image: The Asia Excellence loading the first Gorgon LNG cargo for delivery into Japan. Photo: courtesy of Chevron.