offshore

Brent Delta - the old lady of the North Sea.

Recycling of offshore oil gas rigs. Shell Brent Delta demolition photography.

 Brent Delta at the start of demolition. Offshore Photographer.

 Brent Delta at the start of demolition. Offshore Photographer.

Shell's Brent Delta one of the largest and oldest oil production platforms in the North Sea has been  brought to shore at the end of it's working life.

After nearly 40 years at sea (just think how long your car would last in that environment) the 44 meter tall excluding the flare stack, 24,000 tonne structure will be environmentally dismantled at the Able UK's Seaton Port, Hartlepool, UK with over 97% to be recycled.

A massive undertaking even taking the title 'largest ever marine lift' -to date anyway. It's the beginning of a new industry at such a scale, the decommissioning of such structures and the legal requiremnts for companies to remove such structures at the end of their working lives will see more growth in this offshore sector.   

RUK/GWO WAH & Rescue Wind Turbines, GWO Sea Survival, RUK MST Vessel Transit & Transfer.

More training completed. GWO RUK

GWO RUK WAH Working at height and rescue training for offshore wind and renewables.

GWO RUK WAH Working at height and rescue training for offshore wind and renewables.

Opito BOSIET + CA-EBS, MIST +Norwegian Sect.  RUK/GWO WAH & Rescue Wind Turbines, GWO Sea Survival, RUK MST Vessel Transit & Transfer, CSCS+Working at Height..the list of industry safety training is getting longer.

Let's get straight to it..all this training takes time and incurs considerable expense, however it does open up opportunities for access to client commissions.

The oil and gas industry although has had a tough time of late is still a thriving industry with many new projects in planning, the renewables and wind energy generation is a fast growing but still quite a young industry that continues to grow.

To support an ongoing commission I was asked to undertake safety training to enable access to offshore wind turbines and construction vessels, this involves not just getting to and transiting to the structures, but also climbing and in an emergency escaping from the top nacel or performing a rescue of a colleague, as well as sea survival.

Most of the vessels involved in the construction of offshore wind installations require the oil and gas BOSIET, this covers also sea survival, fire fighting, escape from smoke filled compartments and the HUET..a simulated helicopter ditching at sea and underwater inversion.

Although there were many areas of learning that cross over each has specific areas of training to cover, and stepping off an approx 30 meter training tower to experience how the Milan controlled rate descender works takes a bit of nerve.

I completed both BOSIET and RUK/GWO courses with Advanced Industrial Solutions Newcastle facility..worlds class facilities, knowledgeable training delivered by some great instructors..and the on site food facility provides great quality hearty meals with plenty of dietary choices (fyi-I'm not selling AIS..bit praising the whole set-up)

So...want some offshore projects photographed..I'm qualified. 

Panic and planning. (adding a small detail can make a big difference) Construction Photography.

'F8 and be there' Creating construction photography images when you have no control.

Offshore Wind Construction Photography.

Offshore Wind Construction Photography.

Sometimes you get lucky..being a professional is about getting lucky every time you pitch up at a location, and being lucky is more about thinking ahead far enough to bring together elements in a changing environment.

Offshore Wind Construction Photographers

Offshore Wind Construction Photographers

Construction progress photography-returning to the same location over a period of time to record how a project is progressing. Progress photography used to be just another line on the project tender by the client so they have a record at regular intervals, it can be so much more.

Creating image content on projects can be a great tool to engage (read-customers/stakeholders) and often show to a wider audience the activities not often considered associated with a brand. 

Returning a location regularly can present opportunities and challenges to keep creating fresh new content to show the story unfolding. Often the first 'big' lift is all about innovation, proof of concept...and the engineer's calculations were correct! then stages of progress showing the race to completion.

Planned lifts often give you a little time to 'scope' out a few good viewpoints to get clear unobstructed views whilst working around exclusion zones and other activities, but sometimes as the process is happening and the 'elements' are moving around a potential shot lines itself up.

Working out if you you have time get off site-into the project offices-up the stairs-find a 'body'-persuade them to stop what they are doing-get their PPE on and go stand on a staircase for 15 mins..then get back to the camera without missing a key part of the lift..and whether it's worth it! All I will say as an industrial photographer fitness plays an important part (note to self: STAY AWAY FROM THE DESSERTS and cycle more!!) 

''F8 and be there” is attributed to the photographer Weegee (actually Arthur Fellig) who shot iconic street images during the 1930's and 40's, progress photography is similar..it's about being there-and being there often means you get to be in the right place at the right time.

The positioning of the 'branded' observer in the shot was something I had in mind for while but was waiting for the right alignment of elements. On big projects it's nice link the people and brand with the huge structure constructions-giving them 'ownership' of the project.

 

      

 

Offshore Photographer UK BOSIET GWO

Help-they are trying to drown me!

Industrial photography: noun The art of creating images in industrial environments.

Industrial photographers are a strange breed..we do something that is often creative and challenging then we make it more difficult by choosing to exercise our craft in some of the most difficult environments.

We often get to see really impressive engineering that most don't even think about in their daily lives, just switching on a kettle has a massive chain of infrastructure behind the creation of a cup of hot water.

To get access to many of the infrastructures need to make your morning 'wake-up' a reality requires us to have the same safety standards in place as those that are building, maintaining and producing the energy for your 'hot brown'

The offshore environment can be as hostile as space..but only closer. Tiny little engineered islands stand alone, often cut off from help if things go wrong, which is why safety and training is the No.1 priority when working offshore.

Getting to and from your worksite means helicopter transport over water, and safety dictates that anyone traveling this way should be trained to improve their chances of a positive outcome if things go wrong. Sea survival and procedures for exiting a ditching helicopter are a requisite of offshore life.

Having completed a week of offshore training you really get to understand how the safety culture is paramount to the industry, we all know about the disasters-mostly caused by systemic failures and the escalation of even small errors can be catastrophic really makes you think hard about your actions in the workplace.

I am now a holder of the following certifications:

Opito BOSIET   BOSIET with CA-EBS   MIST    Offshore Medical  Additional Norwegian Sector

P.S. Big thanks to AIS Offshore Training (http://training.aisgroup.co.uk/) for delivering a great course, and especially to Laura for making sure I didn't drown (although I was quite enjoying it at the end!) 

OFFSHORE BOSIET HELICOPTER TRANSPORT PHOTOGRAPHER

OFFSHORE BOSIET HELICOPTER TRANSPORT PHOTOGRAPHER

Bringing the Power Ashore.

UK Photographers

Planetary Stranding Machine, UK.

Building high capacity power cables to bring ashore green electricity produced by vast offshore wind farms requires some pretty amazing machines to construct a cable that is both long lasting, efficient and durable to be buried under the ocean for up to 50 years.


These cables are constructed in a continuous process, any joint or termination in a cable is seen as a potential failure point, and the expense and resources involved in making repairs is vast.


A planetary stranding machine starts with the middle first and builds up the layers of transmission cable, insulation, protection and reinforcement strands by slowly turning every 'strand and wire' around the central core like a big spinning wheel making thread..only this thread can carry 66Kva!


The shot above is illuminated using Elinchrom Hybrid Quadra's, lighting the entire machine along its length and underneath, with a shorter exposure for the ambient light.