Italy’s Eni has introduced the first gas into its Tango floating LNG (FLNG) facility moored in Congolese waters.
Eni said in a statement on Thursday that gas introduction had been achieved in record time– only twelve months after the final investment decision.
Following completion of the commissioning phase, Tango FLNG would produce its first LNG cargo by the first quarter of 2024, placing the Republic of Congo, also known as Congo-Brazzaville, on the list of LNG-producing countries, it said.
In August last year, Eni signed a deal to buy the 144 meters long Tango FLNG from Belgium’s Exmar.
The floating LNG producer, delivered in 2017 by China’s Wison, has a liquefaction capacity of about 1 billion cubic meters per year of gas, or 0.6 mtpa, and a storage capacity of 16,100 cbm.
In October, officials from Eni, Exmar, Congo’s SNPC, and Drydocks World gathered to celebrate the sail away of the FLNG and also the Excalibur FSU from Dubai to Congo.
The unit arrived in Angola in November onboard Seaway 7’s heavy-lift vessel, Seaway Swan, and was subsequently towed to its location offshore Pointe Noire, Congo.
Exmar serves as the engineering, procurement and conversion (EPC) contractor for this project, and has designed the mooring system and performed the refurbishments on both vessels at the Drydocks World yard.
Also, Exmar provides the FSU on a long-term charter and will be responsible for all terminal operations on the Congo LNG project.
ENI said that the FLNG is moored alongside the Excalibur FSU using an innovative configuration called “split mooring,” implemented here for the first time in a floating LNG terminal.
The Congo LNG project leverages Marine XII gas resources and existing production facilities in a new, phased approach that will allow to reach about 4.5 bcm per year of gas liquefaction capacity at plateau, as well as zero routine gas flaring, Eni said.
A second FLNG vessel with a capacity of about 3.5 bcm per year of gas, or 2.4 mtpa, is under construction in China and is expected to begin production in 2025.
The unit will be able to store over 180,000 cubic meters of LNG.
Eni said the Congo LNG project will help Congo meet its energy needs while seizing the opportunity to exploit surplus gas through LNG production.
The entire volume of LNG produced will be marketed by Eni.