R&B Switchgear is to supply the switchgear systems required to decommission Shell’s oil platform Brent Delta.

Over the coming years Shell are to shut down and dismantle the platform, under what is expected to be ‘one of the most technologically demanding abandonment projects ever attempted’.

R&B is responsible for modifying both the medium voltage switchgear and drilling platform low voltage switchgear. This will enable the generating plant on the drilling platform to provide power to the main platform.

Brent is amongst the UK’s oldest and largest offshore development projects. Over the past three decades, Brent has delivered around two billion barrels of oil and around 5.7 trillion cubic feet of gas, but its output is declining to a point that will eventually render it unviable.

On June 23, the temporary generator, powered by R&B’s generator panel was synchronised with the Brent Delta electrical system, and loaded to approximately 800KW for a 4Hr successful load run. The majority of the commissioning team will leave, with the commissioning supervisor staying on board to ensure a positive handover. The project was completed in just ten weeks, and its success is attributed to the work of Shell DSC team, R&B Switchgear of Rochdale & NOV Portable Power of Aberdeen.

John Jones, the decommissioning and transition consultant for Shell Oil was extremely pleased with the way the job was conducted.

"This has been an excellent job from start to finish, very many thanks," he said.

With the project expected to take many years to complete R&B Switchgear is looking forward to many more successes working alongside the offshore team at Shell.