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Australia’s largest single resource project

06th November 2012

The Gorgon project is one of the world's largest natural gas projects and the largest single resource natural gas project in Australia's history; it is a long-term, technically complex energy development signifying a dramatic advancement of engineering.

Australia’s largest single resource project
Chrevon plans to build a plant that will include three, 5 million-tonne-per-annum LNG trains and a domestic gas phase and establish international shipping facilities

The Gorgon Project will develop the Gorgon and Jansz/Io gas fields, located within the Greater Gorgon area, about 130 km off the north-west coast of Western Australia. It includes the construction of a 15 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant on BarrowIslandand a domestic gas plant with the capacity to provide 300 terajoules per day to supply gas to Western Australia.
Gorgon LNG will be off loaded via a 4km long loading jetty for transport to international markets. The domestic gas will be piped to the Western Australian mainland.

Operated by Chevron, the project is a joint venture of its Australian subsidiaries (47.3 per cent), ExxonMobil (25 per cent), Shell (25 per cent), Osaka Gas (1.25 per cent), Tokyo Gas (1 per cent) and Chubu Electric Power (0.417 per cent).

How it works

Three 5-MTPA GE main refrigerant compression trains, each comprising two GE Frame-7 gas turbines plus advanced technology liquefaction compressors, will be used to produce LNG by chilling to –160°C, ready for shipping, before re-gasification and pipeline transportation for use by domestic and industrial customers. Before  liquefaction of the gas, carbon dioxide (CO2) will be stripped out and injected into the depleted natural gas wells 1,300-meters below the sea, to ensure its safe storage and the reduction of emissions. Six surface operating, 15-megawatt (MW) electric-motor driven GE compression trains are being deployed for this purpose.

Fuelling economic prosperity

Gorgon will be an important pillar of the Australian economy for more than 40 years, according to Chevron. Economic benefits from the first 30 years of the initial project scope, according to ACIL Tasman will include a projected AUD 64bn boost to Australia’s Gross Domestic Product and direct and indirect employment of around 10,000 people at peak construction. Australian businesses also will benefit with many contractor opportunities.

Barrow Island will be Gorgon’s home – occupying 1.3 per cent of its un-cleared land mass. Although a Class A Nature Reserve, it is recognised internationally as a location where industry and the environment co-exist.

Chrevon plans to build a plant that will include three, 5 million-tonne-per-annum LNG trains and a domestic gas phase and establish international shipping facilities.

The Gorgon Joint Venture plans to develop the Greater Gorgon area gas fields, located between 130km and 200km off the north-west coast ofWestern Australia.

The resource Chevron is extracting contains about 40 trillion cubic feet LNG.

“Globally, the net impact of using Gorgon LNG will result in about 45 million tones less greenhouse gas emissions, when comparing against coal – and that’s the equivalent of taking about two-thirds of all vehicles off Australian roads”, believes Chevron.

US partnership

In July Chevron announced it signed a more than USD 600 million 22-year contractual services agreement (CSA) with Chevron Australia Pty LTD to maintain the compressor trains and associated equipment that will be at the heart of the Gorgon Project off the northwestern coast of Australia.

Under the agreement, GE Oil & Gas’ Global Services division will provide Chevron Australia with scheduled maintenance, access to expertise through resident engineers, monitoring and diagnostics of the installed equipment coupled with engineering analytics, plus an inbuilt guarantee relating to continuity of production. As part of this collaboration, GE also will manage inventory, supplying initial spare components. The agreement will cover a period of 22 years, with GE’s first contract performance manager scheduled to begin working in Perth in October 2012.

“Companies around the world continue to express confidence in our services expertise, which enables them to operate as efficiently as possible over the long term. This agreement confirms our capability to meet the growing demand of the oil and gas industry for continuous monitoring and diagnostics of installed equipment globally and especially in areas that are becoming increasingly challenging from an environmental point of view. The underlying mega-trends of the oil and gas industry play to our strengths across the Oil & Gas value chain and that’s why our customers look at us for long-term partnerships,” said Dan Heintzelman, president and CEO of GE Oil & Gas.

The new CSA ensures the continued participation of Australian companies and the ongoing creation of economic growth opportunities for local communities in Western Australia. The new GE service and maintenance center in Jandakot, Perth, is expected to deliver 4,000 training days in 2013 for GE staff and employees of its customers.

Under the agreement GE will supply:


  • Five 130-MW Frame-9 gas turbines in a modularised solution to meet the power generation needs of Barrow Island’s gas treatment and liquefaction facilities.


  • Three main refrigerant compression trains driven by six Frame-7 gas turbines required for Gorgon’s production of 15 million ton per annum (MTPA) LNG.
  • Six electric-motor driven compression trains to power Gorgon’s pioneering C02 sequestration project, one of the world’s largest, injecting up to four times more C02 than any other project worldwide.


  • 20 Subsea Trees—7” VetcoGray subsea trees with retrievable choke modules to control and manage the production of gas from subsea wells.
  • 20 VetcoGray subsea wellhead systems.


  • Production controls systems—used to monitor and control the complete subsea infrastructure, controlled remotely fromBarrowIsland.


  • The supply of five pipeline termination systems, five manifolds, 34 pipeline end terminations and several other structures, including pig launchers/receivers and umbilical distribution assemblies, 45 spools and 18 multi-bore well jumpers.
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