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Insights Gorgon | Unlocking Australia’s energy

Shaping Australia’s most iconic project

The sheer scale and complexity of the Gorgon Project is unprecedented. The Greater Gorgon gas field, one of Australia’s largest natural gas resources, contains a staggering 40 trillion cubic feet of gas. Situated off the coast of Western Australia in a Class A nature reserve, and cyclone corridor – it required the expertise of a team with a reputation for delivering in challenging and remote environments. AtkinsRéalis were well placed to ensure the best outcome for their client and the local communities involved. 

In 2009, Kentz, which was since acquired by AtkinsRéalis , was awarded the first of three major contracts to provide engineering and construction services in a number of areas on the Chevron Australia-operated Gorgon Project. Our talented teams have been successfully delivering across multiple disciplines and aspects of this mega project's lifecycle – from design, engineering and construction, right through to ongoing operations and maintenance.

Engineering design on Barrow Island
image of two men in high vis clothing smiling

Our first contract was designing and building the construction village, in joint venture with our partners (Thiess and Decmil), on one of the most important conservation reserves in Western Australia. The village needed to house over 4,000 workers, support the future development of the facility, and meet stringent environmental requirements. Our teams were responsible for providing engineering and design capabilities, as well as supplying all offshore procurement, while our partners provided the project management, local procurement and construction services.

Critical communications

We were also solely awarded the Telecommunication and Electronic (T&E) systems Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract in 2009. As part of the project scope, our T&E team erected the 120 metre Communication Main Mast (CMM). 

The CMM supports the permanent operations communications link from Barrow Island back to the mainland and is critical to the operation of the Gorgon plant. It is now Australia’s heaviest 120 m guyed mast, withstanding the highest ever recorded wind speed on earth of 408 km/h (113 m/s).

The remoteness of the project site called for state-of-the-art telecommunications technology, including:

  • Converged IP networks for multiple data streams
  • Satellite data communications
  • Navigational aids, including radar and vessel tracking, meteorological and oceanographic systems
  • Site wide WAN/LAN with network management
  • Central fire and security monitoring
  • Data transmission via fibre optic and microwave

Today AtkinsRéalis continues to provide operations and maintenance support for both onshore and offshore telecommunications and electronic systems on Gorgon and across all of Chevrons Western Australia Oil Assets.

Large scale delivery

In 2016, we completed the mechanical, electrical and instrumentation construction package with our joint venture partner, CB&I. The contract included the structural, mechanical, piping, electrical, instrumentation and commissioning support for the construction of three LNG trains, with an annual capacity of 15 million tonnes, along with associated utilities, and a domestic gas processing and compression plant.

Unlocking resources and a better future

Gorgon continues to be an important pillar for Australia, putting it in a prime position to meet future energy demands, and provide a clean burning fuel, at home and overseas. The Project has created 60,000 direct and indirect jobs, transforming the future for its communities. It also gave our teams the opportunity to balance technology and expertise with working to protect the environment.
The project even received Contractor of the Quarter Award and the Best Performing Contractor - Environmental and Quarantine Award in 2015.

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27 million 
hours without a Lost time injury

800 km
of pipeline has been laid onshore and offshore

2.5 million
households supplied with electricity

15.6 million
annual production capacity of LNG

workers directly employed on the Gorgon LNG Project