Case studies

Sharjah flag Risk based inspection programme, United Arab Emirates

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Client: Zakum Development Company, ZADCO

Assets: Upper Zakum, Zirku Island, Umm al Dalkh, Satah-Arzanah

Location: Abu Dhabi


Start Date


End Date

The successful and safe management of risk is important for every business, but it’s critically important for a major oil and gas company like ZADCO. 

ZADCO chose Petrofac to develop and implement a risk-based inspection (RBI) programme, covering both its offshore production and onshore processing facilities at Upper Zakum, Umm Al Dalkh, the Satah fields and Zirku island.

The project involved developing RBI methodologies and the initial set-up of our exclusive BuildMETM asset programme development software. This was followed by an RBI study of over 70,000 items of static pressure equipment, piping, relief valves and pipelines.

Initial screening and studies – from generic inspection to worst-case

As part of our initial screening phase, we carried out qualitative risk assessments at the system level with tailored, equipment-specific methodologies. Risk was based on the worst-case combination of likelihood of failure and loss of containment consequence applicable to that system. To increase cost efficiencies for ZADCO, generic inspection plans were conducted for equipment and piping within low risk systems.

Pilot studies were then carried out for system-level qualitative RBI screening, and every aspect of the detailed programme, comprising static equipment and piping, platform supply vessels (PSVs) and pipelines.

Main scope of work – Rigorous challenge and review

We carried out initial risk assessments on a site-by-site basis.

We ensured that RBI methodologies were continuously improved and updated to reflect the status of equipment and operations in the field. This included developing and preparing standard inspection templates within BuildME.

These templates were integrated with many of ZADCO’s existing integrity management practices, including corrosion threat assessment methodologies, the pressure system integrity management initiative and inspection technical reference documents.

At every stage of the process we worked closely with our client to ensure complete success. For both phases of RBI implementation, our work was subjected to rigorous challenge and review, at risk workshops with the full participation of ZADCO.

What we achieved for our client

We were able to help ZADCO by applying our expertise, experience and exclusive tools to:

  • Apply RBI timely and efficiently, across extensive offshore and onshore facilities, with appropriate focus on current and emerging integrity threats
  • Develop the basis for a sustainable RBI programme with BuildME software
  • Reduce the risks to personnel, the environment and to the business by enabling a detailed understanding of integrity threats and identifying the measures to mitigate those threats
  • Minimise potential production downtime by extending the period between internal inspections for major vessels
  • Support programme roll-out and tailor BuildME RBI functionality to meet ZADCO’s future business and operational needs