Abu Dhabi Gas Industries (Gasco) has issued an expression of interest (EoI) letter for a nitrogen pipeline stretching from Mifra to Ruwais. The 48-inch pipeline is part of the Habshan oil field injection project that requires nitrogen to be transported from a nitrogen plant in Mifra.

Once completed, the pipeline will stretch over 70-80 kilometres, according to sources close to the project.

The deadline for the submission of technical engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) bids has been set for July 12, commercial bids are due in on August 23.

Sources close to the project understand this timeline has been pushed back.

“There will be an extension for [the technical bids]. And the commercial bids will be later as well. They will not go in during Ramadan [during August],” said a source at a contractor.

Gasco is also reviewing technical bids for the nitrogen injections system at the Habshan oil field, paving the way for commercial bids submissions. The last of a series of technical clarification will be held on June 21, said a source at a bidding contractor, after which bids will go in within two weeks.

“We are expecting the deadline for commercial bids to be set in the first or second week of July,” said the source.

The nitrogen programme runs in parallel to a carbon dioxide injection programme. Both are pilot projects searching for new ways to increase oil recovery rates at depleting oil fields without the use of natural gas, which is in short supply in the emirate.

The 48-inch pipeline is part of the Habshan oil field injection project…it will stretch 70-80km

The plans call for the injection of 670,000 cubic metres an hour of nitrogen gas into the reservoir. The gas will be produced by Elixier, joint venture of Linde and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc). Elixier will begin producing the nitrogen at its air separation facilities in Mirfa by 2011.

The nitrogen will be transported from Ruwais to Habshan in an existing pipeline, believes one EPC source.