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Case Study

Sur de Texas-Tuxpan Offshore Pipeline

The Sur de Texas-Tuxpan (SdTT) natural gas transportation system is a 685km, 2.6 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) offshore pipeline. It runs from the Gulf of Mexico near Brownsville Texas to Tuxpan in Mexico supplying gas to power plants in the Altamira, Naranjos and Montegrande areas.

The Challenge

Sur de Texas-Tuxpan (SdTT) is the first offshore pipeline system to be constructed and operated by Infraestructura Marina del Golfo (IMG), TC Energía. This is the first operated pipeline by a non-Mexican entity setting the precedent for Mexico under the Federal Electricity Commission (Comisión Federal de Electricidad or “CFE”). Challenges that were overcome include:

  • Highly compressed CFE schedule
  • Offshore permitting for dredging and pre-commissioning
  • Logistics of transporting, weight coating, and handling over 55,000 joints
  • Dredging and pipeline burial
  • Pipeline stability during winter and hurricane construction seasons
  • Design and pullout of 2.5-km pipe bundle consisting of two 42” pipelines
  • Management of construction in sensitive environmental, fishing, shrimping, port, and military areas
  • Phased pre-commissioning plan

Our Approach

We had the opportunity to contribute to all phases of the SdTT project. This started with helping prepare the CFE bid. We then provided an integrated team seconded to TC Energy for procurement and construction and our input continued through to start-up and as-built paperwork completion. Our scope of work included:

  • Feasibility study including preliminary cost, schedule, design, and potential suppliers
  • Preliminary survey
  • Permitting support
  • Full detailed and follow-on engineering
  • Project Administration (HSSE, Purchasing, Project Controls, Document Control, Travel and Site support)
  • Engineering Construction Support (Owner’s engineering during offshore construction phases)
  • Project Execution & Management (Construction and Pre-commissioning team oversight and vessel / site representatives)
  • Handover to Operations (Interface with TCE Integration and Operations teams)

The Results

Our technical expertise and engineering input enabled our client to feel comfortable with the tight deadlines set by the Mexican governing agencies, which in turn set the pace for the SdTT project. We successfully achieved a pipe design that was procured and manufactured globally using several pipe mills and installed using select offshore construction assets. In 2019 the pipelines were successfully installed and the SdTT offshore pipeline system is currently providing approximately a 40% increase of Mexico’s natural gas import capacity.

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