Encyclopedia of Ocean Engineering

Living Edition
| Editors: Weicheng Cui, Shixiao Fu, Zhiqiang Hu

Decommissioning of Fixed Platform

  • Hongtao LiEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-6963-5_167-1



The decommission of a fixed platform is the final phase of its life cycle. The process starts by unplugging and abandoning the well; removing the conductors, subsea systems, and topsides followed by the installation process in reverse sequence; doing remediation work; and clearing debris from the project site. Modules can be removed and placed on barges and then towed to different locations depending on the planning for subsequent use. The usual methods of decommissioning are complete removal, partial removal, and remote reefing (Ibrahim Khan and Islam 2007).

Scientific Fundamentals

Decommissioning Process

The decommissioning process of fixed platform is very complex, which can be divided into the following steps.

Planning and Engineering

The initial phase of decommissioning is to gather all the available information and prepare an Authorization for Expenditure (AFE) for owner approval. The structure is inspected, and an underwater survey...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Brent Delta platform removed from legs (2017) (2017, April 28) Retrieved October 17, 2019, from BBC: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-39747670
  2. Bull AS, Love MS (2019) Worldwide oil and gas platform decommissioning: a review of practices and reefing options. Ocean Coast Manag 168:274–306CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Ekins P, Vanner R, Firebrace J (2006) Decommissioning of offshore oil and gas facilities: a comparative assessment of different scenarios. J Environ Manag 79(4):420–438CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Hamzah BA (2003) International rules on decommissioning of offshore installations: some observations. Mar Policy 27(4):339–348CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Ibrahim Khan M, Islam MR (2007) Chapter 9 – Decommissioning of drilling and production facilities. In: Ibrahim Khan M, Islam MR (eds) The petroleum engineering handbook: sustainable operations. Gulf Publishing Company, Houston, pp 365–400CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Osmundsen P, Tveterås R (2003) Decommissioning of petroleum installations – major policy issues. Energy Policy 31(15):1579–1588CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Shell U.K. Brent Delta topsides decommissioning close-out report. Shell report number: BDE-D-TOP-AA-6945-00001, August (2018)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Offshore Engineering Technology Center of China Classification SocietyTianjinChina

Section editors and affiliations

  • Zunfeng Du
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering, School of Civil EngineeringTianjin UniversityTianjinChina