Equinor to restart Hammerfest LNG plant on Friday

Norway’s Equinor expects to restart its 4.3 mtpa Hammerfest LNG export plant on Friday following a gas leak.

Equinor said on Tuesday that the leak was detected just before 10.00am local time while personnel were moved from the area and nobody was injured.

A spokeswoman for Equinor told LNG Prime on Wednesday that the “leakage has been repaired”.

“Planned start-up is now on Friday,” she said.

The spokeswoman said it was “a leak in a valve”, adding that she can not provide further details at this point.

Gassco data showed on Tuesday that Hammerfest LNG will be offline until 1200 local time on March 26 at least due to “a gas turbine failure”.

This was later changed to “process problems” and “gas leakage in system 26”.

In May last year, Equinor closed the facility after a gas leak occurred in connection with a valve in one of the plant’s cooling circuits. The firm restarted production in June the same year.

The LNG plant liquefies natural gas coming from the Snohvit field in the Barents Sea.

Gas reaches Hammerfest LNG via a 160-kilometer gas pipeline which became operational in the autumn of 2007.

Equinor is the operator of both the Snohvit field and Hammerfest LNG with a 36.8 percent stake.

Other license owners of Snohvit are Petoro (30 percent), TotalEnergies EP Norge (18.4 percent), Neptune Energy Norge (12 percent), and Wintershall Dea Norge (2.81 percent).

The partners are currently working on upgrading the facility.

The Snohvit Future project will extend the productive life of Hammerfest LNG past 2030, and includes onshore compression and electrification of Hammerfest LNG.

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