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Tie-back in the offshore oil and gas upstream activities refer to the connection of additional risers to the floating vessel or platform.


Originally the offshore oil and gas industry used to focus on large fields that could be explored and produced in drilling strait below the floating vessel or the platform.

But the high costs of the surface structure, a FPSO or FSO or FPO or any kind of platform limits this solution to large offshore fields.

In addition most of these large fields are neighbored by multiple smaller fields, called marginal fields or pockets.

These marginal fields may individually contain far too short reserves to justify the capital expenditure in heavy surface infrastructures but their aggregation may be significant enough to develop a sub-sea exploration plan.

After drilling these marginal fields, and installing all the sub-sea equipment on the seabed, risers are installed to connect them to the floating vessel or platform.

This connection of these risers to the vessels or platforms is called tie-back

Tie-back will also be used for all the equipment such as the risers and sub-sea connectors.

A tie-back risers can be either a single large-diameter high pressure pipe, or a set of concentric pipes extending the casing strings in the well up to a surface BOP

Physically this tie-back operation is made through the turret and the associated mooring systems.

The first tie-backs were performed for marginal fields located at few kilometers distance from the main field, but today the risers reach several tens kilometers distance and in the near future hundreds kilometers distance may be expected.

The North Sea and the Gulf of Mexico are the regions where the tie-back concept is widely expanded.

Most of the giant fields of these offshore regions are maturing and depleting while the large infrastructures built for these fields are still available for decades of production.

The tie-back system in association with the sub-sea risers technologies fits perfectly in these regions to explore, develop and put in production thousands of marginal fields which can balance the depleting fields and benefits from the available processing capacities on the floating vessels and platforms

For more information and data about oil and gas and petrochemical projects go to Project Smart Explorer

6 thoughts on “Tie-Back”

  1. Dears,

    Your tieback inquiry is very important for the some subsea projects, and could you update me.

    Best regards,

    Joao Garcia

    1. Hi,

      Both have the same meaning, it’s just a wording difference.
      Do not hesitate to visit our glossary (available on this website) to learn all the wording of the oil&gas world.

      Best regards

  2. Appreciate your brief about tie in/back wells, Indeed, I would be grateful if you provide me with more info about the connection systems and based on your experience which one is more beneficial than others,


    1. Thank you for comment Adel,
      If you want to learn more about Oil&Gas, do not hesitate to subscribe to our newsletter

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