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Overview of Floating Production Storage and Offloading Vessels (FPSO)

A Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel is used in the oil & gas industry to process and store oil and other hydrocarbons gathered offshore. An FPSO might produce these hydrocarbons itself, or it may get them from subsea wells.

FPSOs are often converted oil tankers, where the ship has been equipped with hydroprocessing equipment above deck and hydrocarbon storage facilities below deck. The ship can also be equipped with mooring systems which allow it to stay in place if necessary. These vessels often have crude oil pumped into them via pipelines from subsea reservoirs for processing. 

FPSO vessels are particularly useful because they allow for oil production even in incredibly remote locations, in which it would otherwise be impossible to process hydrocarbons. These processed hydrocarbons can then be easily transferred to a shuttle tanker, or even a pipeline, for easy transport to onshore facilities. Another huge benefit to FPSO vessels is their mobility. Once a reservoir has been depleted, they can be moved to a new location.

There are other types of floating systems aside from just FPSOs, including: Floating Storage and Offloading systems (FSOs), Floating Production Systems (FPSs), and Floating Storage Units (FSUs), each of which has it’s own uses.

 

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