Discovered by Unocal in 1998, the West Seno field, lying in water depths of about 3200 feet, is the first deepwater oil field in Indonesia.
Located in the Strait of Makassar, the West Seno field is about 50 km away from the giant Attaka field and 60 km from the Santan terminal in East Kalimantan.
The oil and gas are produced through a tension leg platform (TLP) which is also the first of its kind in Indonesia.
The floating topside of the tension leg platform is attached to the seafloor by four 3200 feet long tendons having a diameter of 26 inches and a wall thickness of 1.036 inches.
Currently all the subsea wells are produced from platform TLP-A which can accommodate 28 wells. Unocal originally had planned to build two tension leg platforms.
Oil production began in 2003. The fluids from the subsea wells are initially separated into oil and gas on the FPU (Floating Production Unit).
The separated oil and gas are then transmitted via two 12-inch diameter and 60 km long pipelines to the onshore facilities at Santan for final handling and storage.
One of the oil production challenges of West Seno is handling the difficult-to-break emulsions. The emulsions are hard to break due to the presence of certain chemicals in the fluid, the decreasing fluid temperature as it rises to the surface, and the motion of the floating platform.
The development of the West Seno field was made possible by having a favorable PSC profit splits of 35 percent instead of the regular 15 percent for shelf developments.
The field is currently operated by Chevron.